Business briefs

Jul. 19, 2013 @ 06:45 PM

Health care reform seminars offered restaurant, hotel operators

DURHAM – The N.C. Restaurant & Lodging Association is holding two seminars in Durham and in Charlotte to help hotel or restaurant owners, franchisees or chain executives understand health care reform and how to prepare for it.

In July, federal officials announced the delay of a key provision of the law that required employers with 50 full-time equivalent employees – defined as workers who work 30 hours or more a week -- to offer health insurance, or pay a fine.

That provision of the law will be delayed until January 2015.

“I think it gives us just a little bit of time to catch our breath, and that’s all,” said association president and CEO Lynn Minges. “It’s going to be expensive, it’s complicated, and there’s just so much they don’t know about it now,” she added. “I think there’s great confusion in the marketplace.”

The seminar in Durham will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Aug. 5 at the Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center on Emperor Boulevard.

Another will be held the next day in Charlotte from 2 to 4 p.m. at Electrolux.

The seminars are free for association members and $100 for non-members. For more information, go to the website

RTP employees, leaders talk redevelopment at summit

DURHAM – A summit at the headquarters of the Research Triangle Park that ended Friday drew several hundred people to talk about ideas for the park’s redevelopment, according to park officials.

Bob Geolas, president of the Research Triangle Foundation of North Carolina, the manager of the 7,000-acre business park, said the summit was held to update employees, local political leaders,and others about progress on the redevelopment effort.

Park leaders want to make the business park appeal to a new generation of innovators. They unveiled last year a new master plan for the park includes three proposed clusters of new high-density development.

It will be years before construction actually starts, Geolas said, so park leaders are talking about ways to transform the park “in a more innovative way” such as through a bike-share program or social events.

He also said they’re talking about a concept of creating a place in the park that would bring local universities and entrepreneurs together –an idea he said has been discussed at the summit.

“The central element to this idea is how do we provide, how do we as a park, how are we of service to our universities, how are we meeting some public need, and what everyone seems to get excited about is the idea of there being a kind of global research initiative that is based here in the park that brings our universities together to work on issues,” Geolas said. “That’s an idea that we’ve sort of been working on the summit is a place to share ideas.”