NC Politics In The News

January 20, 2015

Pardon Our Dust

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CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL: Chiquita’s exit spurs state incentives debate
First, Mercedes-Benz chose Atlanta over the Triangle for its corporate headquarters. Next, Chiquita, less than four years after a splashy move to Charlotte from Cincinnati, disclosed plans to leave within 12 to 18 months, taking 320 jobs out of the city.

WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL: Florida surpasses North Carolina in offering fewest weeks of jobless insurance benefits
North Carolina no longer offers the nation’s lowest number of weekly unemployment insurance benefits.



WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL: Panel debates Common Core
The state’s top academic officer said fears over a lawsuit from the creators of the Common Core State Standards are “preposterous.”

STAR NEWS: New Hanover, Pender schools want control of calendar returned
Two local school systems are lobbying state lawmakers to return the control of local school calendars to local boards of education – a movement backed by the N.C. School Boards Association and strongly opposed by the coastal tourism industry, which suffered when school systems began cutting summer short a decade ago.

NEWS & OBSERVER: National search for UNC system’s new leader comes after political shift
The UNC system’s governing board will hire the next UNC president in a different political era for North Carolina and a rapidly changing landscape for higher education.



NEWS & RECORD: Newest Medicaid reform called a ‘good compromise’
The latest attempt at state Medicaid reform would transfer daily oversight of the program from the Department of Health and Human Services to an authority managed by a paid seven-member board.

FAYETTEVILLE OBSERVER: State lawmakers have no plans to extend Medicaid in North Carolina
North Carolina won’t extend government-paid health insurance to nearly 500,000 of its lower-income residents, the state legislature’s leaders said on Wednesday, the first day of the 2015-16 session of the N.C. General Assembly.

FAYETTEVILLE OBSERVER: North Carolinians caught in the Medicaid gap
When the Supreme Court ruled that Obamacare was constitutional, it also said that the federal government could not make it mandatory for states to accept one part of the law – an expansion of Medicaid benefits to people at 138 percent of the federal poverty level.

CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: Costly but crucial: NC services for disabled at heart of class-action settlement
As North Carolina’s legislators prepare to try once more to control the cost of Medicaid, the settlement of a longstanding lawsuit may provide some protection to people with developmental disabilities.



WRAL: Starnes steps down for liaison job
As a pair of reporters walked into his office Monday, Rep. Edgar Starnes, R-Caldwell, joked about the half-packed boxes and his impending departure from the legislature.

NEWS & OBSERVER: Shakeup at DENR replaces top two assistant secretaries
The two top assistants to the newly appointed head of the state’s environmental agency are being replaced in a shakeup that elevates veteran staffers over political appointees.



THE HERALD-SUN: N.C. public universities eye tuition hikes after 1-year hiatus
North Carolina public universities want to raise tuition and fees by an average of 4 percent next year and 3.5 percent the following year for undergraduate state residents.

WRAL: Lagging revenue doesn’t worry top lawmakers
The newly installed leaders of the General Assembly said this week they are not worried about a revenue report showing state tax collections are lagging roughly $200 million behind projections for the first half of the state’s fiscal year.



CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: Rural interests rise with Republicans
Wednesday’s General Assembly opening will spotlight a paradox of North Carolina politics – the re-ascendance of rural power in one of the nation’s most rapidly urbanizing states.

THE TIMES-NEWS: First bill in House targets government land seizures
The first substantial bill of the General Assembly’s new session tackles a perennial hot topic: government’s ability to take private property.

WRAL: GOP leaders want to tackle job creation; Democrats push ethics reforms
If anyone was hoping Republican and Democratic leaders would lay out detailed agendas on the first day of the 2015 General Assembly session, they were in for disappointment.

STAR NEWS: Many optimistic as new legislative session opens in Raleigh
As legislators from both chambers – many with family in tow – regrouped in Raleigh on Wednesday to be sworn into office, there were plenty of smiles, hugs and handshakes to go around.



CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: Business group pushes for N.C. jet fuel tax break
The Charlotte Regional Partnership is pushing legislators to continue a tax break on jet fuel that’s set to expire at the beginning of next year, potentially costing airlines millions of dollars.

WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL: State, federal tax-filing changes could generate confusion
Tax filing season begins in earnest Tuesday in North Carolina, with significant federal and state changes that could confuse and exasperate some taxpayers.

CITIZEN-TIMES: NC tax break that helped rebuild downtown up for debate
Local and statewide groups are pushing for the restoration of a tax break some say was crucial to the revitalization of downtown and Biltmore Village and could still be used to improve historic buildings across Buncombe County.



CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: Anti-toll group to seek halt to I-77 project
Members of a group that opposes proposed toll lanes on Interstate 77 north of Charlotte plan to file a legal complaint Tuesday seeking to stop the project.



Please contact the Raleigh McGuireWoods Consulting team if you have any questions or comments:

Harry Kaplan, Senior Vice President

Jeff Barnhart, Senior Vice President

Franklin Freeman, Senior Vice President

John Merritt, Senior Vice President

Johnny Tillett, Senior Vice President

Kerri Burke, Vice President

Bo Heath, Vice President

Jillian Totman, Assistant Vice President

Sarah Wolfe, Assistant Vice President

Katy Feinberg, Vice President, MWCAdvocacy