NCDP Clips for Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

NCDP Clips for Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

Tweet of The Day

LEGISLATURE 2015

NC House budget due week of May 18, speaker says (Raleigh News & Observer) — N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore said Tuesday that his chamber’s budget proposal will likely be completed the week of May 18, with votes on May 20-21.

Vehicle insurance tax dropped from road maintenance bill(WRAL-TV) — A proposed vehicle insurance tax has been removed from legislation designed to reduce North Carolina’s dependence on gas tax revenue to build and maintain highways.

NC lawmakers spin road-funding fix that ‘spreads pain’ around (AP) — A proposal to narrow North Carolina’s long-term transportation funding shortfall by relying less on gasoline taxes and more on driver’s fees and taxes on car sales won mostly favorable reviews Tuesday from GOP lawmakers and road-building advocates.

NC legislator backs away from proposed new tax on car insurance (Raleigh News & Observer) — Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin called on legislators Tuesday to oppose a House bill that would add a new 6.5 percent tax to the annual price of automobile insurance, and the bill sponsor signaled that the tax would be reduced or eliminated.

Protesters target NC bill on gun permits (Raleigh News & Observer) — Nearly three-dozen moms flooded the General Assembly Tuesday protesting a proposal they said would eliminate background checks on nearly half of all handgun buyers in North Carolina.

‘Second Chance’ laws sought (WRAL-TV) — Advocates for people with criminal records are calling for changes to state laws they say make it nearly impossible for former convicts to re-enter society and support themselves.

Grading schools, talking economic development (WRAL-TV) — Gov. Pat McCrory is scheduled to speak to county commissioners early in the day. Midday committee meetings include debate on a bill that would revamp North Carolina’s school grading system.

POLICY & POLITICS

N.C. is the top state for recruiting plants (Charlotte Business Journal) — Site Selection magazine has named North Carolina its most competitive state for new plants in 2014. North Carolina’s ranking was based on its success in landing qualified projects and for total projects per capita, the magazine says. In last year’s rankings, North Carolina was a distant fifth to top finisher Georgia.

Lassiter joins calls for N.C. legislature to pass incentives bill (Charlotte Observer) — John Lassiter is joining the chorus of officials calling for the N.C. General Assembly to pass a new incentives bill, which he said is essential to keep the state competitive in the race to lure companies. Speaking at the Charlotte Rotary Club Tuesday, Lassiter, chairman of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, said the delay is hurting North Carolina’s chance to attract businesses.
DHHS looking for new home (WRAL-TV) — With the completion of the Dorothea Dix property sale to Raleigh, the state Department of Health and Human Services will begin the search for a new headquarters.

With Dorothea Dix deal in hand, Raleigh asks ‘What’s next?’ (Raleigh News & Observer) — With a unanimous vote by the Council of State, Raleigh and state government have inked a deal for the city to buy the Dorothea Dix campus. Boosters have long said such a sale could bring a “Central Park” for the entire state to Raleigh. First, though, there are a few decisions to be made. “This is the next chapter, and this is going to be just as much work – if not more – as it was getting to this point,” said McFarlane, who has shepherded the deal through its last convoluted turns.

Statewide Changes to Immunization Requirements Soon to Begin (TWCN-TV) — With summer break around the corner, as parents make vacation plans it is also important to not forget to make plans for their child’s immunizations.

Winston-Salem will be site of public hearing on photo ID rules (Winston-Salem Journal) — Winston-Salem is one of nine locations selected to be host to a public comment hearing on the State Board of Elections’ proposed rules for implementing photo identification requirements. In 2013, the N.C. General Assembly passed legislation requiring people who vote in person to present a photo ID starting in 2016.

Adams to host small business symposium at Charlotte school (AP) — Rep. Alma Adams is marking National Small Business Week by hosting a symposium in Charlotte designed to link constituents with owners and resources.

Congressional inaction on transit funding means grid-lock for Triangle projects(Triangle Business Journal) — If federal lawmakers fail to act, the N.C. Department of Transportation says it may be forced to put some Triangle-area projects on hold.

Beth Wood to seek third term as state auditor (Raleigh News & Observer) — State Auditor Beth Wood announced Monday she’s running for re-election to a third term.

THE SPILL

More people near coal ash pits told not to drink their water (AP) — North Carolina officials are warning more residents living near Duke Energy’s coal ash pits that it’s not safe to drink or cook with their well water after tests showed contamination levels that is raising health concerns.

Duke seeks delay in shareholder suit over coal ash spill (AP) — A Delaware judge is mulling Duke Energy’s request for a six-month halt to a shareholder lawsuit prompted by a massive coal ash spill in North Carolina while the company tries to resolve related lawsuits and finalize a $102 million settlement of a federal criminal investigation.

Solutions sought for Dan River damage (Greensboro News & Record) — North Carolina residents will get an opportunity this evening to participate in a “community stakeholder” forum on ways to compensate for last year’s Dan River coal ash spill. The Dan River Basin Community Stakeholder Team plans two meetings at Osborne Baptist Church in Eden to gather comments on steps Duke Energy might take to atone for the spill at the power company’s retired Dan River Steam Station on the outskirts of the city.