Government

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

April 21, 2014

(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

April 21, 2014

(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

April 18, 2014

(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

April 17, 2014

(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. 

State says charter schools must reveal salaries

April 16, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Reversing a previous statement, the N.C. Board of Education now says charter schools must disclose how tax dollars are spent, including salaries. State Superintendent June Atkinson said that when the N.C. Department of Instruction said in March that charter schools did not need to publicly reveal salaries, the agency's attorneys had misunderstood the question.

Pay increases for veteran teachers unlikely this year

April 16, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

GOP legislators say it is unlikely that North Carolina educators will receive across-the-board salary increases this year. Some Democrats say the reason is the recent tax overhaul that will leave the state with $2.4 billion less in revenue over the next five years. State employees and teachers have had one pay increase since 2008.

McCrory, Decker announce new workforce-development initiative

April 15, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Gov. Pat McCrory and Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced the launch of NCWorks, a workforce-development initiative to be developed over the next 12 months that will connect businesses with potential employees.

Charlotte will pay $1.3 million for PCB cleanup

April 15, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte City Council approved $1.3 million for testing and decontamination of PCBs found in the city's sewer system in February. The toxic chemicals were first linked to a grocery store grease trap and have been detected at two water treatment plants. 

Mitchell drops out of congressional race for Watt's seat

April 15, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Citing an inability to raise enough money and a crowded ticket, former Charlotte City Council member James Mitchell has dropped out of the 12th Congressional District race. He was one of six Democrats vying for the seat previously held by Mel Watt. 

Taxi company with exclusive airport contract gave money to Cannon's campaign

April 14, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

A cab company that was one of only three allowed to operate at Charlotte Douglas International Airport gave $28,000 to Patrick Cannon's mayoral campaign, 10% of his overall fundraising total.