NCDP Clips for Monday, December 14th, 2015
GOP SENATOR: TRUMP’S MUSLIM BAN COMMENTS A ‘HUGE MISTAKE’ (The Hill) – A top Senate Republican called Donald Trump’s call to ban Muslims from entering the United States a “huge mistake" that would fuel terror recruitment in the United States.
MCCRORY SCHEDULED TO VISIT LOCAL ONSLOW SCHOOL (WCTI-TV) – Gov. Pat McCrory was scheduled to attend a "Bright Ideas" education presentation at a school in Holly Ridge, Monday.
POLICY & POLITICS
NC LAWMAKERS START HEARINGS ON INSURERS’ DRUG PRACTICES (Charlotte Observer) — North Carolina lawmakers are opening hearings on an insurance practice of forcing patients to try a series of alternatives to see if they work before paying for medications recommended by their doctors.
MEDICAID REFORM PLAN SHORT ON DETAILS, LONG ON QUESTIONS (N.C. Health News) — When lawmakers in the N. C. General Assembly passed their long-awaited Medicaid reform bill this past September, they all acknowledged that the 14-page bill would not be the final word on the future of the $13 billion program. Gov. Pat McCrory signed a bill overhauling the state’s Medicaid program in October. We take a closer look at some of the elements of the bill.
3 MORE WNC COUNTIES DESIGNATED MORE ‘DISTRESSED’ (Carolina Public Press) — State rules give advantages in economic recruitment to smaller, poorer counties based on tier designations.
AFFORDABLE CARE ACT DEADLINE LOOMS (Greensboro News & Record) — People who wish to renew or sign up for coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace without having a gap in coverage must do so by midnight Tuesday.
GREENSBORO’S INCENTIVES POLICY HELPING TO SPUR PRIVATE INVESTMENT (Greensboro News & Record) — Self Help Ventures, Natty Greene’s, Ecolab and Qorvo are among those who plan to use incentives to aid expansions, meaning more jobs and investment in the city.
SOURCES: PPD EXPLORES SALE, IPO; VALUE AT UP TO $8 BILLION (Wilmington Star-News) — A sale or initial public offering could value PPD at between $7 billion and $8 billion, including debt, sources say.
80 JOBS GONE: GOLDEN PEANUT AND TREE NUTS PLANT TO CLOSE (Greenville Daily Reflector) –Golden Peanut and Tree Nuts will be shutter its Aulander facility by February, eliminating more than 80 jobs in the small northwestern Bertie County town, from laborers up to supervisors and managers.
LARGE CHARLOTTE CATHOLIC CHURCH INCREASES SECURITY (AP) — One of North Carolina’s largest Catholic churches says its taking security precautions by stationing uniformed and plain-clothes police officers at weekend Masses and banning bags or anything else that can conceal contents.
SCHOOLS & UNIVERSITIES
NUMBERS FROM AN ALTERED STATE, PART 2 (N.C, Policy Watch) — 250 — decline, in dollars, in per-student K–12 funding in North Carolina for fiscal year 2015 from 2014 (“Most states still funding schools less than before the recession”); 14.5 — percentage reduction in per-pupil spending in North Carolina from 2007–08 to 2014–15 when adjusted for inflation; 7 — rank of North Carolina among 50 states in largest percentage of reduction in per-pupil spending from 2007–08 to 2014–15.
MAKING EVERY STUDENT SUCCEED ACT: OPPRTUNITY FOR ALL STUDENTS IN N,C. (EdNC) — Last week, Congress along with President Obama approved the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, most recently known as No Child Left Behind. Under its new title, the Every Student Succeeds Act, we see some significant changes that push for greater local control and state authority, with several additional shifts in how Federal accountability will be managed.
SHORTAGE OF BUS DRIVERS FOR LENOIR COUNTY SCHOOLS (Kinston Free Press) — Patrick Holmes, spokesman for Lenoir County Public Schools, said the school system is aware of the issue, and is looking for a solution. “We have enough drivers for our buses,” Holmes said. “We don’t have enough substitute bus drivers to cover if those (regular) drivers get sick or can’t come in for whatever reason.”
CMS CAPITAL NEEDS ARE GROWING – EVEN WITHOUT NEW SCHOOLS (EdNC) — Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools needs an average of $55 million a year for the next five years to make capital improvements to its campuses — and that number doesn’t include the cost of building new schools.
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
WHO OWNS THE SUN? ALEC & DUKE ENERGY TRY TO HEAVILY FINE SMALL CHURCH (Clean Technia) — A recent story from North Carolina sounds like a rendition of David and Goliath. The question that comes out of it may be, who own’s the sun? ALEC and Duke Energy are trying to heavily fine Faith Community Church and a small NC nonprofit. Why? For caring about the environment and installing 20 solar panels. The utility is asking state regulators for a stiff penalty against the nonprofit providing solar power to Faith Community Church.
OYSTERS TELL THE STORY OF OUR COAST (Coastal Review) — Nothing tells the complicated story of our coast like the oyster. Symbolically, it’s a prism that refracts details about how our state’s economy, environment and culture. Wrapped up in it, is a story about our coast’s past, present and future.
WHAT’S THE BUZZ? MAJOR RETAILERS TO PHASE OUT BEE-KILLING PESTICIDES – In recent years, winter months have taken a toll on North Carolina’s honeybees, but beekeepers across the country are buzzing about a new development. Major retailer Home Depot is phasing out the sale of flowering plants using pesticides that can kill bees.
NOVOZYMES CEO: PARIS CLIMATE DEAL ‘HISTORIC TURNING POINT’ (WRAL-TV) — Peder Holk Nielsen, chief executive officer of Novozymes, which maintains a huge operation in Franklinton, N.C. and produces enzymes used in the creation of biofuels, says the international climate change deal struck in Paris "sends a very strong signal" that low-carbon technologies will advance. He sees a "low-carbon future."
HOW ONE WORD NEARLY KILLED THE CLIMATE DEAL (Washington Post) — In the final days of the Paris talks, officials walked a diplomatic high wire as the pact’s fortunes rose and fell.
THIS BUD’S FOR YOU, SEN. BERGER! (Watauga Watch) — The MillerCoors announcement that it would be closing its brewery in Eden, NC, by next September has caused some acid reflux for NC Senate Bossman Phil Berger, in whose district there will be 520 additional unemployed voters. Pundits are wondering what those voters will think of Sen. Berger when it finally dawns on them that he’s responsible for knocking the sides out of the state’s unemployment safety net.
MAGISTRATES’ MARRIAGE OPT-OUT CHALLENGE IS NO SURPRISE (Fayetteville Observer) — While we respect the magistrates’ rights to their beliefs, the fact is that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry. If it’s part of a magistrate’s job to perform marriages, they should have a simple choice: Perform the marriage, or move on to another job. We expect that’s exactly what the courts will rule.
AN EDUCATION LAW THAT MOVES BACK IN TIME (Charlotte Observer) — There’s been quite a bit of cheering about the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act, the successor to the 13-year-old No Child Left Behind law.
BOOST TROOPERS (Greenville Daily Reflector) — North Carolina highway patrol troopers have been short-changed by the General Assembly. In all probability, only the General Assembly can make things right.