NCDP Clips for Friday, March 20th, 2015

NCDP Clips for Friday, March 20th, 2015

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LEGISLATURE 2015

Guilford GOP sheriff wants referendum on City Council changes (Greensboro News & Record) — Guilford County Sheriff BJ Barnes is one of the county’s most popular and longest-serving Republican officials.

Tension Rises as Governor and Senate Leaders Clash Over Issues (TWCN-TV) — It has been Republican versus Republican this week in Raleigh as leaders have clashed over state issues. That tension was never more apparent than on Wednesday afternoon when a back and forth between the governor and Senate leaders played out in the press and social media.

Bill repeals religious exemption from vaccinations in NC (AP) — Some North Carolina senators worried about the resurgence of certain communicable diseases want to eliminate an exemption from North Carolina’s childhood-vaccination requirements that is given to parents who oppose them on religious grounds.

NC legislature appeals ruling over appointment powers (Charlotte Observer) — Lawyers for the General Assembly on Thursday formally appealed this week’s landmark ruling over state appointment powers to the NC Supreme Court.

NC Commerce chief touts necessity of incentives (Kannapolis Independent-Tribune) — Unless the North Carolina General Assembly can work together to make sure incentives are available for economic development advocates to lure business here, the state will lose out on some major opportunities. That was the message of John Skvarla, North Carolina Secretary of Commerce, during the recent Cabarrus Regional Chamber of Commerce Economic Development summit at The Refuge in Kannapolis.

Effort to keep ‘protest petitions’ fails in committee voice vote(Raleigh News & Observer) — Sometimes the outcome of a vote is subjective. A Democratic representative thinks his amendment had enough votes to change a controversial NC bill, but a Republican committee chairman ruled the motion failed in a voice vote.

NC House elects 5 newcomers, 3 incumbents to UNC board (AP) — The state House’s picks to serve on the University of North Carolina governing board for the next four years include five newcomers and three incumbents.

Rally draws NC supporters of medical cannabis (Charlotte Observer) — A Charlotte lawmaker’s effort to legalize medical marijuana drew more than 100 people to a rally Thursday at the General Assembly in Raleigh.

Power of NC rezoning petitions scaled back by committee (AP) — North Carolina municipal residents could no longer have access to a formal process that makes it harder for city councils to pass zoning changes in legislation approved Thursday by a House committee.

Community colleges could get state funds for summer classes, scholarships (Raleigh News & Observer) — Community colleges in North Carolina could get state support for summer courses and for student scholarships under proposals being considered in the legislature.

POLICIES & POLITICS

Community broadband debate centered in a North Carolina town (McClatchy Newspapers) — The city-owned, ultra-fast Internet service in Wilson, N.C., has some wind in its sails these days.

NC wants to identify those vulnerable to traffickers (Charlotte Observer) — North Carolina must figure out how to identify youth who are likely to be lured by human traffickers, make them less vulnerable, and do more to help victims recover from their trauma, advocates say.

Identity Crisis (New York Times) — A Wisconsin case offers the Supreme Court an opportunity to block a systemic assault on the right to vote. The challenge to Wisconsin’s voter ID law is the first of the current round of cases to reach the Supreme Court after a full trial and appellate review; the appellate process is still continuing in the Texas case, Veasey v. Abbott, and in a case from North Carolina, League of Women Voters v. North Carolina.

N.C. Commerce Sec. Skvarla talks DENR, the Senate, JDIG (Triangle Business Journal) — N.C. Commerce Sec. John Skvarla compares his transfer in January as the former Secretary of the state’s Department of Environment and Natural Resources to the Commerce Department to a gushing flood of water. "At DENR is was like Niagara Falls pouring into your office all day, every day, and it was always bad,” Skvarla, told the crowd atTriangle Business Journal’s Power Breakfast event on March 19. "At Commerce, it’s like Niagara Falls pouring into your office every day, but there’s actually good stuff in there, there’s optimistic stuff, there’s fun stuff. We’re making things grow and watching the economy and helping grow the economy.”

SCHOOLS & UNIVERSITIES

New Yorker focuses on the politics at UNC (Raleigh News & Observer) — The New Yorker magazine comes with a new piece about removal of Tom Ross as UNC system president, with mentions of Gov. Pat McCrory, former state budget director Art Pope and the recent vote to shut down the Center on Poverty, Work, and Opportunity.

Groups, governor differ on how to spend education money (WRAL-TV) — At a conference Thursday for school administrators in Raleigh, the Gov. Pat McCrory commiserated with those looking for greater investment in public schools, reiterating his plan to expand education spending in the state. "We have a lot of work to do, and I understand that, and I am listening to you," he said. "We increased over a billion dollars into teacher salaries — a billion dollars." Educators on hand said they appreciated the governor’s efforts, but some say he hasn’t gone far enough.
Retired officers group backs Common Core (Raleigh News & Observer) — A group of retired military officers says North Carolina should keep the Common Core standards for math and English/language arts. The officers say weaker education goals could put the state in jeopardy in future base closure decisions.