NCDP Clips for Thursday September 10th
NO DEAL: Budget work continues to next week (WRAL-TV) — Although both House and Senate negotiators say they’re making progress, leaders now don’t expect a deal to be released before the weekend, with votes scheduled for next week.
N.C. budget-writers talk about progress, momentum (AP) — The odds seem better that a final North Carolina state budget will be voted on by the General Assembly next week.
Six issues that have slowed NC budget negotiations (Raleigh News & Observer) — House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger met until midnight Tuesday to work through budget disagreements that had eluded other negotiators.
N.C. Lawmakers Debate Putting the Freeze on Solar Growth (Public News Service) — The tax credit believed to be largely responsible for North Carolina’s ranking as fourth in the nation for installed solar capacity is set to expire at the end of this year – unless lawmakers opt to extend the credit. While the credit is debated, a new report from Environment North Carolina highlights the growth of solar in the state over the last several years.
House will cave to Senate on sunset of N.C.’s renewable energy tax credit (Jones & Blount) – North Carolina’s 35 percent tax credit for renewable energy production will be allowed to expire, House Speaker Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, had told fellow House Republicans. Moore has said the House will accede to the Senate position on letting the state’s 35 percent investment tax credit for renewable energy production end on Dec. 31.
Renewables critics sound off with Koch brothers’ megaphone (WRAL-TV) — Opponents of renewable energy programs held an hour-long roundtable at the Legislative Building on Wednesday about their concerns. The event was sponsored by the American Energy Alliance, the political lobbying arm of the Institute for Energy Policy, a conservative think tank funded by Charles and David Koch. The event moderator was Tom Pyle, president of the AEA and the IEP, and a former Koch Industries lobbyist.
N.C. renewable energy standard focus of Koch brothers’ forum (AP) — Opponents of a 2007 law that mandates certain amounts of electricity sold in North Carolina originate from sources like solar panels and wind farms are making a late-session push to get final legislation passed to freeze those levels.
State lawmakers agree to $30M film funding (Port City Daily) — Ted Davis has declared North Carolina’s film industry “officially back open for business.” The state representative’s statement–made after lawmakers reached a $30 million compromise on the N.C. Film Grant Program–was preceded earlier this week by news that a TNT pilot is set to shoot in the Port City next month.
NC budget appears likely to include film tax credits (Winston-Salem Journal) — Film production tax credits — barring another negotiating shakeup — are going to be in the final version of the 2015-16 state budget after all. House and Senate budget leaders agreed Tuesday to include up to $30 million in film production tax credits.
Now that ‘Under the Dome’ is done, questions about local filming remain (Wilmington Star-News) — For the first time in years, it’s all quiet on the set in Wilmington.
With $30M in N.C. film grants, EUE/Screen Gems exec will target ‘long-term’ TV series (Triangle Business Journal) — While no official budget deal has been struck, legislative leaders in Raleigh have agreed to continue the film grant – a cash incentive to be distributed to qualifying projects planning to film in North Carolina. And one Wilmington exec says the goal is going to be to attract television shows.
McCrory signing bill expanding unemployment job search bill in Gastonia (AP) — Unemployment insurance legislation being signed by Gov. Pat McCrory includes likely early relief for businesses paying extra taxes and increased mandates upon benefit recipients to look for work.
Environmental Bills at a Standstill (Coastal Review) — Legislators haven’t made much progress in reaching agreement on two “reform” bills that would have far-reaching effects on environmental regulations.
POLICY & POLITICS
Rep. Robert Pittenger won’t discuss federal investigation (Charlotte Observer) — On his first day back to Washington after a long summer recess and a work trip to the Middle East, U.S. Rep. Robert Pittenger declined to discuss the federal investigation into the financing of his 2012 campaign.
UNC Charlotte economist: Brace yourselves for a bumpy ride to finish out the year (Charlotte Business Journal) — North Carolina’s economy has continued to expand despite growing uncertainty this year, but don’t expect a smoother ride in the latter half. That’s the gist of UNC Charlotte economist John Connaughton’s latest quarterly forecast, presented Wednesday at the university’s uptown campus.
Jeb Bush Tax Plan Makes Forays Into Populism (New York Times) — Mr. Bush proposed to eliminate some tax brackets and curtail valuable deductions and the carried interest tax loophole that have enriched investment managers for years.
Jeb Bush’s Tax Plan Looks to Cut Loopholes for Wealthy (New York Times) — “Low growth, crony capitalism and easy debt — that’s President Obama’s economic agenda in a nutshell, and the tax code has helped make it possible,” Jeb. Bush wrote ahead of an economic policy speech in North Carolina. “It’s past time for a change.”
Jeb Bush’s new tax plan could cost $3.4 trillion over next decade (Washington Post) — The GOP candidate’s economic advisers offer a scale of budget deficit growth in the trillions.
Bush Wants Fewer Tax Breaks for Wealthy Than Most in GOP (Wall Street Journal) — Jeb Bush released key details of his tax proposals, including additional tax cuts for business and investment income, as well as new limits on deductions and other breaks.
Jeb Bush proposes ‘simple, fair and clear’ tax code (WRAL-TV) — Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush called Wednesday for a lower corporate tax rate and immediate tax deductions for business investments.
Jeb Bush proposes ‘simple, fair and clear’ tax laws (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush’s tax plan calls for a lower corporate rate and immediate deductions for business investments.
Bush lines on taxes have a familiar ring (WRAL-TV) — In an editorial today, Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush lays out a tax strategy using lines that have a familiar ring to them for those who followed the 2008 campaign.
Ex-prosecutor indicted for trying to influence judge’s race (AP) — A former Davidson County prosecutor seeking a Superior Court judge’s seat has been indicted after authorities say she offered a district judge $20,000 to persuade her husband to drop out of the race.
Jeb Bush Unveils Tax Proposal During Visit to Triangle (TWCN-TV) — The former Florida governor scheduled an economic policy address for Wednesday afternoon in Garner, just south of Raleigh. The event was held at Morris & Associates, which makes industrial ice equipment and chilling systems for the poultry industry.
Jeb Bush unveils economic plan at plant in Garner (Jones & Blount) — This afternoon, Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush presented his plan to revive the nation’s job market and simplify the tax code for businesses and families. Promising an economic environment that will generate 9 million new jobs, Bush said he would bring back some of the Reagan-era tax cuts and incentives for investment in American businesses.
At Speech In Garner, Jeb Bush Presents Plan To Slash Taxes (WUNC-FM) — Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush gave a speech just south of Raleigh on Wednesday, outlining a tax overhaul proposal that he says would spur economic growth by dramatically lowering corporate and personal income taxes.
Arrest caught on camera creates tension in Roanoke Rapids (WRAL-TV) — An arrest of a Roanoke Rapids woman that was caught on camera by a bystander this week has created increased tension between law enforcement officers and the community.
How an update to N.C. liquor law changes the game for local distillery (Charlotte Business Journal) — Come Oct. 1, Muddy River Distillery in Belmont and others across North Carolina will be celebrating an update to state law concerning on-site alcohol sales.
Asheville council approves historic preservation plan (AP) — The Asheville City Council has voted unanimously to establish a plan to preserve historic buildings in the city and in Buncombe County.
New rule may increase pay for home care workers (Raleigh News & Observer) — Home care workers in North Carolina will soon be entitled to minimum wage and overtime under new federal standards. The U.S. Department of Labor issued a letter Sept. 2 to Gov. Pat McCrory urging the state to prepare to comply with the new standards that will affect thousands of caregivers and clients in the state.
Powerful senator, beloved Deep Run native Hardison dies (Kinston Free Press) — Harold Woodrow Hardison died Wednesday morning at the age of 92, but for decades he was quite literally a living legend in his hometown, Lenoir County, the region and the state. N.C. 11/55, running roughly 4.5 miles from South Herritage Street in Kinston south to Jackson’s Crossroads, eclipsed 30 years of bearing his name in December 2014. He served 20 years in the General Assembly — most of those years in the state Senate — and wielded significant power as Senate Appropriations Committee chairman from 1977 to 1984.
Former State Sen. Harold “Bull” Hardison dies at 92 (Raleigh News & Observer) — Former State Sen. Harold W. “Bull” Hardison of Lenoir County, a power in the legislature in the 1970s and 1980s, died Wednesday at 92.
Charlotte has had more killings this year than all of 2014 (AP) — Charlotte-Mecklenburg police have investigated more killings this year than in all of 2014. The Charlotte Observer reported officers have investigated 43 killings this year. That’s one more than were reported last year. Five people were killed in a two-day period over the Labor Day weekend. Police thing those killings are gang-related although several of the victims were innocent people caught in crossfire.
SCHOOLS & UNIVERSITIES
With $4M in funding, new UNC center to explore digital media models for local news (WRAL-TV) — The Knight Foundation and the UNC School of Media and Journalism are teaming up for a $4 million effort to seek new digital media ideas for local news sites deal with "digital disruption."
Higher ed holds higher standards for gender-inclusivity (Daily Tar Heel) — A women’s studies professor at N.C. State University has taken gender-inclusive policy to a new level in academic writing — deducting points from students’ grades for what she refers to as sexist language. According to a leaked syllabus for Nancy Bishop’s online class, she docks points for using “mankind” instead of “humankind,” for writing “he” or “him” or “man” in reference to both men and women, and for employing what she describes as “generalized pronouns.” “Thanks to evolution,” she said in the syllabus, “generalized pronouns and other biased references are no longer acceptable in any class.”
Chatham Co. Schools Launching New Online Communication Resource (TWCN-TV) — Chatham County Schools is making it easier for parents to get in touch with school and district officials.
Getting to know N.C. Virtual Public School (EdNC) — If you are not familiar with the North Carolina Virtual Public School, we are the nation’s second largest state-led virtual school with over 50,000 enrollments each year. We deliver high-quality online courses that are taught by certified North Carolina teachers to students from across the state regardless of their zip codes.
Inmate no longer hates prosecutor who sent him to prison (Raleigh News & Observer column) — When Judge Carl Fox told me two months ago that an inmate he’d sent up the river was offering to donate bone marrow to help save Fox’s life, I figured he was talking about some dude he’d sentenced to six months for getting a five-fingered discount at the five-and-dime or something similarly innocuous.
Is N.C. magistrate law a model for nation? (Charlotte Observer column) — Kim Davis, the clerk in Rowan County, Ky., went to jail last week, and there was no good reason for her to be there. Americans can expect more conflicts over religious conscience and same-sex marriage if we don’t find a way to coexist peacefully. Ms. Davis has become a symbol of what happens when we don’t.
Ocean science brings mixed beach blessings (Fayetteville Observer) — For all of us who love beach excursions, there’s some great news if a new study proves accurate.
Forgetting why businesses chose NC (Raleigh News & Observer column) — Things in North Carolina are changing. The legislature seems intent on remaking North Carolina in South Carolina’s image, slashing education spending and belittling teachers at all levels, rolling back environmental protections, altering the governance of the university system and showing a willingness to spend millions of dollars to attract manufacturing jobs from out-of-state companies.