Government

Voter ID trial begins

January 26, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The trial over North Carolina's voter ID law began Monday in Winston-Salem. A 2013 law requires voters to show one of six specified IDs at the polls unless they can show a "reasonable impediment" for getting one.

Is McCrory in 'huge trouble' over I-77 toll project?

January 25, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

Some Republicans say Gov. Pat McCrory's unwillingness to stop construction of controversial toll lanes in north Mecklenburg and Iredell counties will cost him important votes in this year's election. "He's in big trouble, he's in huge trouble," said Lake Norman Chamber President Bill Russell.

Burr denies AP report, says he'll vote for 'whoever the GOP nominee is'

January 22, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Sen. Richard Burr asked for the retraction of an Associated Press story that says he told supporters at a recent fundraiser he would vote for Democrat Bernie Sanders over Republican Ted Cruz. "I will support whoever the GOP nominee is," Burr tweeted.

UNC System sets enrollment record

January 21, 2016

(News & Record, Greensboro)

The University of North Carolina's 16-campus system broke an enrollment record this fall as nearly 225,000 students signed up for classes. The number of students had been steadily increasing but leveled out during the recession of 2007-09. Only five campuses saw decreasing headcounts this year.

Advocacy group says offshore drilling would be safe, profitable

January 20, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

More than 100 people turned out for a panel discussion on offshore energy exploration, held Tuesday in Raleigh. Michael Whatley, executive vice president of Consumer Energy Alliance, which sponsored the meeting, said a five-year plan, if approved by Congress, calls for 14 potential lease sales in eight areas around the country — one area includes North Carolina.

NC community colleges consider tuition surcharges

January 19, 2016

(Rocky Mount Telegram)

North Carolina's community college system will decide later this month whether to allow individual campuses to tack on a surcharge of up to $256 a year to tuition bills. The surcharges would help pay for expensive equipment required to train workers in fields including health care and advanced manufacturing. The move would run counter to some states, such as Tennessee and Oregon, which now offer free community college courses.

NC revenues $120M above target

January 18, 2016

(WRAL.com)

North Carolina has collected $120 million more than projected for the first six months of the fiscal year, or through Dec. 31. That's 1.2% above the revenue target, according to economist Barry Boardman, though lawmakers won't have a better idea of tax collections until after April 15.

State environmental agency says EPA is dragging its feet on coal-ash removal

January 15, 2016

(WRAL.com)

Citing lengthy delays by the EPA, Tom Reeder, assistant secretary of the state Department of Environmental Quality, says the state agency is considering issuing permits for Duke Energy to remove water from coal-ash ponds without federal approval.

Legislators discuss conflicting reports on water-safety standards

January 14, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

Last spring, the state Health Department told more than 400 well owners near Duke Energy power plants not to drink the water due to contaminants, though similar levels of the same contaminants also have shown up in municipal water systems across the state.

Lottery proceeds won't benefit teachers

January 13, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

A surge in sales of Powerball tickets – the jackpot total had reached a record $1.5 billion as of late Tuesday – is sure to benefit the N.C. Education Lottery, though a change enacted during the 2015 legislative session means proceeds won't go to teachers and assistants but instead to bus drivers, janitors and other support staff.