Keith Crisco dies unexpectedly after fall on Monday

May 13, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Keith Crisco died from injuries suffered after a fall at his home on Monday. The former state Commerce secretary and longtime Asheboro resident had planned to concede his Congressional campaign today to Democratic primary opponent Clay Aiken. Crisco was 71.

Berger may hold most political power in NC

May 12, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

As he begins his fourth session as leader of the state Senate, many people believe President Pro Tempore Phil Berger, Eden attorney and BNC's Mover and Shaker of the Year (cover story, January 2014), is the most powerful politician in North Carolina.

Berger offers preview of state legislative session

May 9, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Senate leader Phil Berger said increasing pay for teachers will be a priority during the state legislature's upcoming session. Berger said other issues the legislature will address are balancing the budget, easing regulations and drilling for natural gas. He also announced his full support for House Speaker Thom Tillis in the race against Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan.

McCrory to ask legislators for 2% teacher pay raise

May 8, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Gov. Pat McCrory said Wednesday he will propose a 2% raise for all teachers this year and will also recommend a long-term plan that would base pay on performance, market competition and leadership.

Results of congressional primary could take a week

May 9, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

It could be a week or longer before the final results are available in the 2nd Congressional district Democratic primary. After Tuesday's voting, Clay Aiken had 369 more votes than Keith Crisco, but 276 absentee and provisional ballots have not yet been counted. Aiken should maintain the lead, but the race could be close enough for a recount if the difference is no more than 1%.

Tillis, Hagan to vie for U.S. Senate seat

May 7, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Preliminary results from Tuesday's primary election show Thom Tillis earned 45% of the Republican vote, followed by Cary obstetrician Greg Brannon with 27% and Charlotte pastor Mark Harris with 18%. As expected, incumbent Sen. Kay Hagan easily won the Democratic primary with 77% of the vote.

Aiken has slight lead over Crisco in close race

May 7, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Tuesday evening, fewer than 400 votes separated former Commerce Secretary Ketih Crisco and Clay Aiken in the Democratic primary for the 2nd Congressional district. The winner will face U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers, the Republican incumbent from Dunn.

McCrory calls for UNC scholarships for military veterans

May 7, 2014

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Gov. Pat McCrory proposed a scholarship program that would give recently discharged military veterans in-state tuition to UNC system schools. Funding, expected to be about $5 million, will come from the North Carolina Education Lottery.

NC legislative committee puts open enrollment bill on hold

May 6, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

A bill that would let students in North Carolina choose to attend any school has been postponed. The Joint Legislative Program Oversight Committee said the bill needs additional review. Republican Sen. Fletcher Hartsell proposed the bill, which he said was modeled after the Douglas County school system in Colorado.

North Carolina faces $445 million budget shortfall

May 5, 2014

(Winston-Salem Journal)

State revenue is predicted to come up $445 million short of what the legislature needs to carry out this year's budget when the fiscal year ends June 30. Gov. Pat McCrory says the state has almost $600 million in reserves to handle the shortfall. Democrats blame last year's tax overhaul, which reduced income tax rates, for the deficit.