An Independent Judiciary in NC

An Independent Judiciary in NC

There has been some discussion in North Carolina about changing how judges are selected. Here is an educational video produced by the North Carolina Bar Association that discusses the importance of an independent judiciary – to all of us. Watch the video and learn...
It’s Empty Stocking Fund Time!

It’s Empty Stocking Fund Time!

The firm is again this year supporting the Empty Stocking Fund. The Dispatch coordinates this annual program that provides Christmas gifts for teens (ages 13-16) who do not qualify under many other gift programs and whose families cannot afford to buy presents. If you would like to contribute, please send checks made payable to “Empty Stocking Fund” to The Dispatch, Empty Stocking Fund, P.O. Box 908, Lexington, NC 27293. Donations can also be delivered to The Dispatch at 30 E. First Avenue in...
Holiday Safety Tips

Holiday Safety Tips

We are well into the peak holiday season, with Thanksgiving behind us and Christmas and New Year’s ahead. While for most people this is a joyous and fun time of year filled with family, friends and celebration, it can also be a time for a little caution. Here are some holiday safety tips from our team. Safety on the Road and Traveling Driving during holiday periods can be more dangerous than normal. Drivers may be in a hurry or be distracted, or there may be ice and snow on the roads. The NC Department of Transportation (NCDOT) compiles crash statistics on North Carolina’s roads. In 2016 (the latest available data), there were 25,273 crashes reported, with 1,114 happening over the 3-day Christmas holiday period (12/23/16 through 12/25/16); there were 10 deaths statewide; 40% of those deaths were alcohol related. Staying safe: Avoid distracted driving. Put the mobile device(s) away and drive defensively. Leave plenty of stopping distance and watch the cars around you. Always be aware of your surroundings. Always use a designated driver. If you are by yourself, call a sober friend, a cab or ride service to get home. Wear your seatbelt, even on short trips. You cannot control what other drivers do, and may be involved in a crash that isn’t your fault. Seatbelts do save lives. Secure children in approved, properly installed car seats. Your local law enforcement agency will help you verify the seat is secure if you are not sure. Have a safety check done on your car before you travel (ask them to check the spare tire, too), and make sure you...
Meet Carl Gray

Meet Carl Gray

Some of you may know Carl Gray. He was born and raised in Lexington, and practiced law in Davidson County and the surrounding area for more than 40 years before retiring in January 2017. Gray joined Brinkley Walser Stoner during the 2015 merger of Brinkley Walser, PLLC and Stoner, Bowers, Gray & McDonald, P.A. Gray began his legal career with Stoner Bowers in 1975 after earning his J.D. at the Wake Forest University School of Law. At the time of the merger, he was President and CEO of the firm. Gray is a Certified Superior Court Mediator by the NC Dispute Resolution Commission. He is also a past member and chairman of the Davidson County Planning and Zoning Board. We recently interviewed Carl to learn more about his legal career and future plans. Q: Why did you choose the legal profession? A: I became interested in the law while taking a business law course during my senior year at Catawba College. I applied to Wake Forest and UNC Schools of law and was fortunate to be accepted at both schools. I chose Wake Forest School of Law (J.D. ’75) because I felt it would be an easier transition for me, and I received a partial scholarship that helped to offset the difference in the tuition. Q: As a general practice attorney, you have handled cases across the board. Do you have a favorite practice area? A: Real estate has been a large part of my practice, and I have enjoyed working in that area, partly because most transactions did not involve much controversy. Q; What is the most memorable...
Are You Ready to Take on a Real Estate Redevelopment Project?

Are You Ready to Take on a Real Estate Redevelopment Project?

There have been a lot of changes over the past 50 years, both in the types of jobs Americans have and where and how they live. Many of these changes have left historic buildings vacant. Many small cities and towns have been hit especially hard, with industry moving out of the area (or out of the country). Have you ever looked at one of the old buildings – perhaps an old Mill – and thought, “I’d love to buy that building and renovate it…”? Redeveloping a historic property may not be as far out of reach as you think. There are federal, state and local incentives and grants available to those interested in rehabilitating historic properties. Programs exist through the federal government and the state of North Carolina to help turn these old buildings into income producing properties, for example, apartments, office space, or retail; homeowner credits are also available in NC for rehabilitating old homes. Our area is currently seeing the beginnings of activity for redevelopment projects, including plans for an apartment building at the old Thomasville Furniture Industries plant and changes at the Depot District. Larger projects may be best tackled through public/private partnerships with a goal of long-term economic development. Here are some resources you may find of value if you’re considering rehabilitating a historic property: Uptown Lexington, Inc. coordinates a façade improvement grant program. Learn more at: http://uptownlexingtonnc.com/facade-grant-application/. The State of North Carolina Historic Preservation Office manages a new historic preservation tax credit program that took effect 1/1/2016 and runs through 1/1/2020. Learn more at: http://www.hpo.ncdcr.gov/ The National Park Services offers up to a 20%...
Sportsmen’s Saturday Coming Soon!

Sportsmen’s Saturday Coming Soon!

Wake Forest Baptist Health Lexington Medical Center Foundation presents Sportsmen’s Saturday, an annual fundraiser to benefit the Medical Center. Richard Childress is the Honorary Chairman for the 2016 event, scheduled for October 29 at the Lexington Historic Southern Railway Freight Depot at 129 S. Railroad Street in Lexington. Just 2,000 tickets are available (ticket price is $100) for this event and those who order before September 12 are eligible for an early bird cash prize drawing. The event features food, beverages, entertainment and a live auction. There are over $100,000 in prizes, including a 2016 Chevy Silverado 4×4, a 2016 Harley Davidson Low Rider, a Field and Stream 12′ Fishing Kayak Package, and much more. Learn more or purchase tickets. Brinkley Walser Stoner is a proud supporter of Sportsmen’s Saturday! See the Sportsman’s Saturday informational flyer 2016. Shown above: the 2015 grand prize winners on their new 2016 pontoon...