Latest revenue forecast: NC has $400M surplus

May 7, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The latest revenue projections show North Carolina will have a $400 million surplus at the end of the fiscal year, a sharp turnaround from the $270 million shortfall predicted in a previous forecast. The projected surplus is due to higher income tax payments and lower tax refunds for 2014.
Related: McCrory: Budget surplus should go to state employees

State erases $2.8M unemployment debt

May 6, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The state has paid off $2.8 billion in unemployment insurance debt a year ahead of schedule, Republican leaders said Tuesday. North Carolina had borrowed from the federal government after the state's unemployment trust fund ran out of money in 2009.

Carolinas OK seismic testing permits

May 5, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Regulators in North and South Carolina have certified proposals for companies to begin seismic testing for oil and natural gas off the Atlantic coast. The N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources approved proposals by Spectrum GEO and GX Technology; two other requests have been received.

Wholesalers battle craft brewers in state legislature

May 4, 2015


Among the hundreds of bills that didn't earn House approval prior to last week's crossover deadline was one that pitted wholesale beer distributors against the state's 130 craft brewers. Craft beer-makers are only allowed to sell 25,000 barrels a year before turning sales over to wholesalers. The failed proposal would have increased the amount to 100,000 barrels.

Legislative deadline kills hundreds of bills

May 1, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Thursday's "crossover" deadline essentially killed hundreds of bills filed in the current state legislative session. Among bills that didn't make the cut include the religious freedom bill, a proposal to legalize medical marijuana and a plan to establish nonpartisan legislative and congressional districts.

State lawmakers work late to beat 'crossover' deadline

April 30, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Members of the N.C. House worked late into the evening Wednesday, approving nearly 50 pieces of legislation, while the Senate passed more than 40 bills. Rules state that bills that don't impact taxes or fiscal spending had to clear one of the two chambers no later than today.

NCDOT to cut 81 jobs

April 29, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The state Department of Transportation will lay off 70 workers on June 1, Secretary Tony Tata said Tuesday. Eleven vacant positions also will be eliminated. Most of the affected jobs are in technical services, which includes roadway design, project development and environmental analysis.

Senators drop bill to revoke Dix property sale

April 28, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Three Republican state senators dropped a bill that would have nullified a deal for the city of Raleigh to buy the former Dorothea Dix hospital property and would instead have sold the property to the highest bidder. The state plans to sell the 308-acre campus to Raleigh for $52 million. A city park is planned.

NC native Lynch to be sworn in as attorney general

April 27, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Greensboro native Loretta Lynch will be sworn in as the next U.S. attorney general on Monday following a long-delayed vote held last Thursday. U.S. Sens. Thom Tillis and Richard Burr both voted against Lynch, who was confirmed by a vote of 56-43 and will become the nation's first black female attorney general.

Moore says House won't take up religious freedom bill

April 24, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore said Thursday a proposed "religious freedom" bill is dead for the session. The bill had drawn opposition from many businesses, including IBM and American Airlines. Critics said the legislation would enable discrimination against same-sex couples.