News In Brief - August 5, 2008

Riverwalk project reaches approval stages

A massive redevelopment project at the old Celanese plant goes before Rock Hill planning commissioners tonight.

Plans call for a business park, outdoor shopping center and homes at the 1,000-acre property off Cherry Road, near the Catawba River. When construction is finished in a decade, the project could account for 12 percent of tax revenues in the city's general fund.

Known as Riverwalk, the redevelopment could include a bicycle racing track known as a velodrome.

The city Planning Commission will make a recommendation at its 7 p.m. meeting. The project then goes to the City Council for two votes. An approval is expected because developers have worked closely with City Hall for more than a year.

For more information, call the planning office at 329-8763.

American Revolution comes to life today

Visitors can experience the sights and sounds of the American Revolution from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at Historic Brattonsville in McConnells.

Revolutionary War music will be performed at 11 a.m. by youth of the Plymouth Fife and Drum Corps of Plymouth, Mich. The event will include American Revolutionary history readings at 11:45 a.m. and a military drill and weapons demonstration at noon.

Tours of the Col. William Bratton home and hearth cooking demonstrations will be ongoing. Admission is $6 adults; $5 seniors; $3 youth, ages 4 to 17; and free for children younger than 3 and for CHM members.

The Plymouth Fife & Drum Corps will perform again at 7:30 tonight at the Old Town Amphitheater at Rock Hill City Hall. Admission is free.

-- Mary Jo Balasco

Inmate turns himself in after accidental release

COLUMBIA -- An inmate accidentally released from the Richland County jail has turned himself in to the sheriff's department.

Sheriff Leon Lott said Monday that deputies were trying to determine how 49-year-old Leroy White was accidentally released. He left the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center about 5 p.m. Sunday.

Lott says White was being held for writing fraudulent checks, providing false information to police and possession of alcohol in a public place. Deputies weren't sure Monday if any additional charges would be filed against White in his accidental release.

The jail is separate from the sheriff's department.

Lexington may ban smoking by October

LEXINGTON -- Smoking could be snuffed out in restaurants, bars, stores and most offices in Lexington by early October.

The Town Council gave initial approval unanimously to the ban Monday.

It would take effect 30 days after final adoption, a step that could come as soon as Sept. 2.

Gov. Easley OKs online ticket scalping in N.C.

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Consumers looking for tickets to sold-out concerts may want to start looking online.

Gov. Mike Easley signed a measure into law Monday that temporarily legalizes ticket scalping over the Internet.

The new law carves an exemption in the state's no-scalping law by allowing vendors to use Internet auction and resale Web sites to flip tickets for profit.

Selling tickets for more than $3 above face value in any other way is still prohibited.

The measure also protects consumers who shop for seats on the Internet.

For example, Web scalpers now must guarantee that the tickets are legitimate and will be received on time. If those conditions aren't met, consumers are eligible for refunds.

Many venues and sports teams had pushed for the change because they said it could help cut down on bogus ticket sales online.

Legislators approved the measure last month after a heated House debate where some lawmakers questioned if the state was moving to legalize online scalping only because it couldn't regulate it.

The new law also makes it illegal for people to use software programs that block out other consumers and allow them to buy large groups of tickets.

The measure takes effect immediately and expires June 30.