August 4, 2014
House Speaker Thom Tillis’ record in the General Assembly is casting a long shadow, and even as the legislative session is winding down he can’t run from it: Forward North Carolina is releasing a video today highlighting the most unpopular elements of Tillis’ record, including cutting nearly $500 million from public education, calling a midnight vote to defund Planned Parenthood, and a budget-busting tax cut for the wealthy.Watch here.
In The News: Speaker Tillis’ Election Year Band-Aid Isn’t Fooling North Carolinians: As the General Assembly’s not-so-short session comes to a close, it is clear that Speaker Tillis’ election year band-aid to evade responsibility for slashing nearly $500 million in public education that gave tax cuts to the wealthy is not fooling North Carolina teachers, students and middle class families. Read more here.
Senate Races in N.C., Iowa, Colo. Could Impact 2016: Senate contests in North Carolina, Iowa, and Colorado could double this year as both congressional battlegrounds and presidential race crystal balls, providing long-term clues for both parties. Read more here.
Economic development measures stuck in adjournment uncertainty: A game of legislative chicken leaves the fate of several high-profile economic development measures in limbo as lawmakers shakily wind down their summer session. Read more here.
Film, historic district programs to scale back: Despite a last-minute push in the state House to revive a tax credit program used to lure television and film production, the program will expire and be replaced with a much more modest grant program. Similarly, a tax credit program that is currently used to help reuse old mill and agricultural warehouse buildings will expire at the end of this year. Read more here.
Florida to begin redrawing unconstitutional congressional maps on Thursday: Florida legislative leaders said on Sunday they plan to call a special session on Thursday after a judge ordered them to redraw the state’s U.S. congressional maps and held open the possibility of delaying general elections in November. The decision to reconvene the legislature, which is out of session, was in response to a ruling on Friday by Circuit Court Judge Terry Lewis that required lawmakers to redraw the maps by Aug. 15. Read more here.
Florida judge takes on gerrymandering; sets stage for Supreme Court cases in fall: A judge in Tallahassee has blown the whistle, and thrown Florida politics into turmoil. Judge Terry Lewis found that two of the state’s 27 congressional districts were unconstitutional and wants a new congressional redistricting plan drawn in time for November’s election. Read more here.
Why America Gave Up On The Fight For A Family-Friendly Workplace, And Why It’s Starting Again: At the first-ever White House Summit on Working Families in June, President Obama took the podium to raucous applause, which only got louder during his speech. While some observers may have brushed it off as mere pandering to the liberal base – and women in particular – before midterm elections, the excitement around these statements is well warranted. Obama’s bear hug of policies like paid family leave and universal child care represents a break with a long, tortured past. Read more here.
UNC board caps tuition increases at 5 percent: The board on Friday approved a pair of measures. The first capped tuition increases, while the second limits the amount of tuition revenue diverted to financial aid at 15 percent, according to WTVD. If a campus exceeds the 15 percent cap, the amount of financial aid would be frozen until it falls back below 15 percent of tuition income. Read more here.
Wake judge’s ruling to dismiss ‘Moral Monday’ cases could have sweeping effect: A Wake County judge is expected to issue an order this week for five “Moral Monday” protester cases that could have much wider implications. Scott Holmes, a Durham defense lawyer and director of the N.C. Central University Civil Litigation Law Clinic, has argued numerous times for different protesters that General Assembly police could not just ask a whole crowd to leave without specifically tailoring their accusations to individuals about the laws they were believed to be violating. Read more here.