NC Politics in the News

March 8, 2021

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WRAL: Bill would name new agricultural sciences building after long-time NC ag commissioner
A new $100 million Agricultural Sciences Center on Reedy Creek Road in Raleigh would bear long-time Commissioner of Agriculture Steve Troxler’s name under legislation that easily cleared the House on Wednesday.

Economic Development

Richmond County Daily Journal: Governor Cooper appoints McLaurin chair of Economic Development Partnership
Former Rockingham Mayor Gene McLaurin has been appointed by Gov. Roy Cooper to chair the governing board of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina. The EDPNC focuses on business recruitment and expansion for the state of North Carolina, as well as promoting tourism. It was formed in 2014. McLaurin has served on the 17-member board since 2017 and has previously been its vice chair.

WRAL: NC Main Street economic development conference set for March 9-11
North Carolina community and economic development leaders will convene virtually for the 2021 North Carolina Main Street Conference, March 9-11. Organized by the North Carolina Department of Commerce and its N.C. Main Street and Rural Planning Center, this year’s conference will be held online to ensure a safe and healthy environment for all participants. The annual conference is expected to attract more than 700 people.


WSOCTV: NC education board wants schools reopened by end of March
Top North Carolina education officials on Thursday called for all of the state’s 115 school districts to make available at least partial in-person instruction by the end of the month to any of the system’s 1.5 million students who want it. The [Board] voted unanimously to support a resolution that agreed with new guidance state health officials outlined a day earlier. The statement also encourages local school boards to act swiftly to implement the recommended reopening.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: NC schools will get $1.6 billion in COVID relief aid. How can they use the money?
North Carolina public schools will share $1.6 billion in federal aid designed to help them to deal with issues related to the coronavirus pandemic. The State Board of Education approved Thursday a policy for distributing $1.6 billion in federal COVID-19 school relief aid. The state Department of Public Instruction will keep up to 10%, with school districts and charter schools getting the rest of the funding.


WFAE: House Poised To Pass Biden’s $1.9 Trillion COVID-19 Relief Bill On Tuesday
House Democrats are expected to pass the final version of a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package on Tuesday, thus delivering on Democrats’ campaign promises and cementing a major legislative victory for the Biden administration.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Black women put a spotlight on NC hair discrimination. Is a new law on the horizon?
Support for the CROWN Act, which stands for Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair, is gaining traction at the local level in North Carolina. The city of Durham already passed a resolution, and other cities are, too.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: NC opens COVID vaccine for Group 3 front-line workers. Exactly who does that include?
Gov. Roy Cooper and NC DHHS Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen previously planned to open vaccinations for the overall Group 3 on March 10, but because of availability of the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine, eligibility for Group 3 front-line essential workers now starts Wednesday, March 3.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Burr, Tillis vote against Biden’s massive COVID-19 relief package as it passes Senate
North Carolina Republican Sens. Richard Burr and Thom Tillis voted against final passage of the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill — President Joe Biden’s top legislative priority — on Saturday. The bill, called the American Rescue Plan, passed the Senate 50-49 along party lines with one Republican lawmaker absent.

WFAE: Another Trump On The Ballot? Lara Trump Eyes NC Senate Seat
A Trump may be on the ballot next year — but not Donald Trump.

The former president’s daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, is eyeing the North Carolina Senate seat being vacated by Republican Richard Burr.


OBX TODAY: NCDOT conducts first bridge inspection using drone at Marc Basnight Bridge
This week, the Marc Basnight Bridge over Oregon Inlet became the first bridge in the state inspected using a drone as part of the regular biennial inspection process. NCDOT will use drones to conduct bridge inspections faster, saving money and reducing the need for lane closures.

WBTV: Over 1 million pounds of roadside litter collected this year
As part of its litter removal efforts, N.C. Department of Transportation crews, contractors and volunteers have now collected more than 1 million pounds of litter from roadsides statewide this year.