Pharmaceutical to pay NC $38.8 million in Medicaid fraud settlement

November 21, 2013

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

New Jersey-based Johnson & Johnson and subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals will pay North Carolina $38.8 million in a multistate settlement regarding claims the drugmaker improperly marketed two of its drugs, which led to Medicaid fraud. 

McCrory visits Arizona, California for political conference, recruiting

November 20, 2013

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Gov. Pat McCrory is in Arizona this week to attend the annual meeting of the Republican Governors Association, following a recruiting trip to California earlier in the week where he visited the headquarters of Google and Facebook.

Phil Berger Jr. to announce congressional run

November 19, 2013

(The News and Record, Greensboro)

Republican Phil Berger Jr. is expected to announce his candidacy for U.S. Congress on Wednesday in Rockingham County, where he currently serves as district attorney. Berger, the son of N.C. Senate leader Phil Berger Sr., will run in the 6th District for the seat now held by U.S. Rep. Howard Coble. Coble recently announced he will retire at the end of the current term.

High Point Mayor Bernita Sims indicted for worthless check

November 19, 2013

(High Point Enterprise)

High Point Mayor Bernita Sims was indicted in Guilford County on Monday for passing a worthless check. Sims allegedly wrote a $7,000 check to a family member as part of an estate settlement; the charge is a felony because the amount is greater than $2,000.

Some public agency executives make more than appointed officials

November 18, 2013

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

According to a salary analysis of over 1,200 state and local agencies, a select group of public officials receive big salaries and benefits, sometimes more than city and county managers, to run housing authorities, city utilities and community colleges.

More than one-third of state military contracts awarded in Cumberland County

November 18, 2013

(The Fayetteville Observer)

An N.C. Department of Commerce report shows that 35% of defense contracts awarded in North Carolina in 2012 were in Cumberland County, home to Fort Bragg military base. The county received more than $1.2 billion out of $3.44 billion military contratcts statewide.

NCDOT faces budget concerns due to lower gas tax collections

November 15, 2013

(StarNews, Wilmington)

The increase of fuel-efficient cars and changing driving habits are leading to a decrease in the amount of gas tax collections, the state's primary source of funding for road construction and repairs.

About 1,700 NC residents signed up for health plans on federal exchange

November 14, 2013

(The Winston-Salem Journal)

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said about 1,700 North Carolina residents successfully signed up for health insurance on the government's online marketplace during the first month it was open, though nearly 30,000 applications were completed.

Bill proposed by Sen. Burr would end government pensions for new employees

November 14, 2013

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Sen. Richard Burr, along with two other senators, has brought back a bill that would replace federal government pensions with the equivalent of a 401(k) plan paid for by the government with employee match. The bill would only apply to new federal employees, while current employees would keep their current pensions.

Decker says skills gap, influx of jobless newcomers keeping unemployment rate high

November 13, 2013

(The Charlotte Observer)

Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker said the combination of a skills gap and a large number of jobless people moving to the state are keeping the unemployment rate high. Decker made the remarks at an appearance in Charlotte Tuesday, where she also touted the state's new public-private partnership for job recruitment.