April 2014

Heart of coal

Ashes of what made Duke Energy so powerful now smudge its reputation.

Cover Story

Business with pleasure

The governor calls on the state's best courses to help him court commerce. Here's a list of the best in the state.

Feature

Skins game

Harold Varner takes aim at becoming one of the rarest things in golf — a black pro.

Feature

Just for Clicks

Best places to own a home in NC, and BJ Leiderman composes a theme song for BNC.

Just for Clicks

NC Trend

N.C. Employment

The North Carolina unemployment rate fell to 6.7% in January, down from 6.9% the previous month. The U.S. rate was 6.6%.

N.C. Employment

Special Reports and Publications

NC's Best Golf Courses

For the seventh consecutive year, the North Carolina Golf Panel is proud to partner with Business North Carolina in publishing rankings of the best golf courses in what we believe is the best state for golf.

N.C. Mid-Market Fast 40

Nominate a company for our annual list of the fastest-growing middle-market companies in the state.

Small Business of the Year

2014 is the 19th year Business North Carolina magazine will select a Small Business of the Year to honor the contributions these companies make to our state’s economy.

The Annual Checkup

Our 2014 list of the state's top hospitals, plus second opinions from other popular rankings.

Best Employers in North Carolina

The state's best employers don't give their workers everything; they give them the right things.

Daily Digest

NC added nearly 20,000 jobs in March

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

North Carolina added 19,400 jobs in March and the unemployment rate fell to 6.3%, compared with 8.5% in March 2013. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, N.C. was second only to Florida in employment growth. 

New food plant to open in Nash County, create 64 jobs

(Rocky Mount Telegram)

Richmond, Va.-based Universal Corp. will invest $20 million and hire 64 people at a Nash County plant where it will produce dehydrated and juiced vegetable and fruit products. 

Recent college grads bolster Charlotte apartment construction

(The Charlotte Observer)

Apartments.com ranked Charlotte the No. 2 city for recent college graduates, behind Denver, Colo. The list was based on factors including affordability, median income and unemployment rates. Developers say millenials who aren't ready to buy houses are flocking to the city, fueling the surge in apartment construction.

Food Safety Act may alter symbiotic relationship between brewers, farmers

(Hendersonville Times-News)

The FDA has proposed tougher standards for breweries regarding how they handle spent grain, which could lead to higher costs for brewers and local farmers. Currently, farmers use the grain as an affordable feed source for livestock, but The Food Safety Modernization Act may force breweries to instead haul the grain to landfills.

GOP legislators blindsided by announcement of McCrory's coal-ash plan

(The News & Record, Greensboro)

State Sen. Tom Apodaca said GOP legislators were not given advance notice of Gov. Pat McCrory's plan for dealing with Duke Energy's coal-ash problems. Two weeks ago, Apodaca was assigned to work with House Republicans in crafting legislation to deal with coal-ash issues, but that group was not consulted when McCrory announced his new proposal last week. 

Mecklenburg, surrounding counties to expand early voting despite new voter law

(The Charlotte Observer)

While 38 N.C. counties will reduce the number of early voting hours in this year's primary election, Mecklenburg County will increase the number of hours in which to vote early from 121 in 2010 to 788. Cabarrus, Gaston, Iredell and Union counties also will expand early voting hours.

School leaders concerned over increase in Wake County teacher resignations

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Teacher resignations in Wake County have increased 41% compared with the same time a year ago. Of Wake's 9,000 teachers, 612 have resigned since the school year began, up from 433 during the same time last year. North Carolina's average pay for teachers ranks 46th in the nation.

McCrory announces oversight plan for Duke Energy's ash ponds

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Gov. Pat McCrory plans to ask state legislators for broader authority over the handling of coal-ash at Duke Energy's 33 ash ponds in North Carolina. McCrory, a former Duke Energy employee, wants site-specific plans that would remove ash from some ponds while leaving others drained and capped and would require more frequent inspections. 

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Events

NCTA Synthesis@Moogfest

April 25-26, Asheville

NCTA is partnering to bring a tech demonstration and expo component to Moogfest. Synthesis@Moogfest will give tech companies with a headquarters or presence in N.C. the opportunity to showcase their cutting-edge products to the thousands of festival attendees.  This is also a great opportunity to interact with potential job seekers.

BNC Pulse

Poll: Fiber fever Tech companies are rushing to upgrade their fiber networks to keep or get your business. How much more would you pay for home Internet service 20 or even 100 times faster than the average service?  $50 more a month  $20 more a month  Nothing, I wouldn't upgrade.

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