Community college system picks S.C. exec for top spot

April 1, 2016


North Carolina’s community college system named James “Jimmie” C. Williamson as president, succeeding Scott Ralls, who left last year to head the Northern Virginia Community College. Williamson serves as the CEO of the South Carolina Technical College System. In total, he’s served 27 years in higher education, including as president at two community colleges.

N.C. Rural Economic rebounds after state funding cut

April 1, 2016

The N.C. Rural Economic Development Center is recovering from a loss of state funding in 2013. The nonprofit agency, which aims to boost the economy in rural North Carolina, received $20 million to $24 million annual for three decades. The center has $3 million in operating expenses and a $5 million reserve.


AG Roy Cooper won't defend state in HB2 case

March 30, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper said Tuesday the new state law that limits protections for LGBT people is "a national embarrassment" that threatens the state's economy. Cooper refused to defend state officials and agencies in a lawsuit filed Monday, prompting N.C. Senate Pro Tempore Phil Berger to call for his resignation.
Also: 2 employment law experts weigh in on the NC discrimination debate, Hundreds block downtown Chapel Hill to protest state's HB2 law

Charlotte tourism group, High Point Market officials worried over LGBT law

March 29, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

The CEO of the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority said the state's new law limiting protections for LGBT people has caused some potential customers to withdraw their interest in hosting conventions in the Queen City. Also on Monday, officials from the High Point Market said dozens of customers have cancelled plans to attend the furniture trade show in April. Gov. Pat McCrory blamed the media for failing to accurately communicate the facts of the new law, while the White House said the law is "mean spirited and sends the wrong message." Meanwhile in Georgia, Gov. Nathan Deal said he will veto a controversial anti-gay bill in his state.

NC GOP chairman keeps up the fight against party officials

March 28, 2016


N.C. Republican Party Chairman Hasan Harnett says he will keep fighting party officials who last week locked him out of his email account and banned him from party headquarters. Officials said Harnett tried to get someone hack into the party website and divert party funds to a separate site, and made "false and malicious statements about other Republicans and staff." Harnett said people have been "scheming and working against" him since he was first elected. 

Critics say 'bathroom law' undermines all workers' rights

March 25, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

The law overturning Charlotte's anti-discrimination ordinance also prohibits cities from raising the minimum wage or enacting living wages and, in some cases, eliminates workers' rights to sue in state courts over discriminatory practices. Some experts also worry the new law could impact federal funding for education programs.

McCrory signs bill ending LBGT protections

March 24, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

N.C. legislators approved a bill that invalidates Charlotte's ordinance protecting LGBT individuals and prohibits municipalities from adding new legal protections for gays, lesbians or transgender people. The House voted 84-25 to support the proposal, while the Senate approved the measure by a vote of 32-0. McCrory signed the bill late Wednesday. Let's hope the move won't discourage businesses looking to bring jobs to N.C., much in the way filmmakers are threatening to leave Georgia over anti-gay legislation passed there.

Lawmakers hold special session on LGBT bathroom ordinance

March 23, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

State legislators will meet at 10:00 a.m. today in response to a provision in a Charlotte anti-discrimination ordinance that allows transgender people to use the bathroom they prefer. A spokesman for House Speaker Tim Moore said a copy of the draft legislation probably won't be made public until Wednesday.

U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers endorses Trump

March 22, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Ellmers, a Dunn resident, became the first woman in Congress to endorse Trump for president. Ellmers, who ran in her first election in 2010 as a tea party Republican, says she relates to Trump's status as a political outsider. "I wasn't part of the usual path that most elected officials take. ... That's what I see in Donald Trump," Ellmers said.

State lawmakers could meet within a week to address Charlotte LGBT ordinance

March 21, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

State lawmakers could return for a special legislative session to look at repealing a provision of a Charlotte nondiscrimination ordinance that would allow transgender people to use the bathroom of their choice. House Speaker Tim Moore hopes to convene legislators before the ordinance goes into effect April 1.