NC Politics in the News

April 25, 2022

Pardon Our Dust

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COASTAL REVIEW: Highly infectious virus spreads among wild birds on coast
Coastal North Carolina’s wild birds and commercial poultry have not been immune to the outbreak of the highly pathogenic avian influenza. The virus, often called bird flu, can be fatal for poultry, especially backyard or commercial flocks, but doesn’t appear to be a threat to humans or other animals.

WRAL: New $18 million agriculture research facility coming to RTP
Leaders of a major agriculture research center in the RTP broke ground on a new $18 million dollar facility with a goal of increasing the world’s food supply.

Researchers hope to learn more about the insect pests that destroy crops.

Economic Development

THE DAILY ADVANCE: Economic check-in: Federal Reserve bank head visits area
Despite record-high inflation the U.S. economy is doing well, says Tom Barkin, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Virginia. “We’re in the middle of the fastest (economic) recovery in any of our memories over the last 23 months,” said Barkin, adding that unemployment is at historic low of 3.6%. “There’s 1.7 and a half jobs available for everyone looking for a job.”


THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: CMS needs a new superintendent – and there’s a shrinking pool to pick from
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, the nation’s 18th-largest public school district, will be searching for its next superintendent at a time when top leaders are leaving the profession altogether.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Leandro judge wants more time to decide whether to order NC to increase school funding
The new judge overseeing the long-running Leandro school funding case wants another week before deciding whether to order the state to transfer nearly $800 million into public education.


WFAE: Early voting begins this week in the North Carolina primaries
Early voting kicks off this week in the North Carolina primaries. Starting Thursday, April 28, voters can begin casting early ballots at a variety of early voting locations. This will be the first primary under North Carolina’s new voting districts for Congress and the General Assembly. The winners of each party’s primaries will go on to the general election in November.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Want to vote by mail? Everything you need to know about absentee ballots in NC
Absentee voting is allowed in North Carolina’s statewide primary on May 17. There are no special circumstances required to vote by mail, but you will need two witnesses (or a notary) to verify your ballot.


WFDD: Winston-Salem prepares first solar panel project for city-owned buildings
The City of Winston-Salem is investing in solar power to help meet future clean energy goals. The first project is slated for one of its main downtown facilities. Solar panels will be installed on the roof of the Bryce A. Stuart Municipal Building. It’s part of an initiative to grow sustainability and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: NC’s medical marijuana bill didn’t advance in 2021. Here’s what to expect this year. 
For a few months in 2021 a bill to legalize medical marijuana had never-before-seen levels of momentum at the North Carolina General Assembly. No weed legalization bill had ever passed even a single committee before. This one sailed through multiple committees.


SPECTRUM NEWS: Court ruling drops masks on mass transit: 5 things to know in North Carolina
A federal judge in Florida Monday struck down a national mask mandate on public transit, including on airplanes, in airports and on trains. The ruling left it up to individual companies and cities to decide whether to require masks.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: In Durham-area congressional race, field of candidates could drive primary to a runoff
In a solidly blue congressional district that includes Durham and Chapel Hill, whoever wins North Carolina’s 4th District primary will have an easy path to winning the general election. But with incumbent Rep. David Price retiring, the crowded field to replace him could mean not just one primary, but two.

WFAE: Dowless, key figure in NC absentee ballot fraud probe, dies
Leslie McCrae Dowless Jr., the key player in a North Carolina absentee ballot fraud probe that led to a do-over congressional election, has died. His daughter, Andrea Dowless Heverly, wrote that her father “passed away peacefully” Sunday morning, according to a social media post. He had been diagnosed with an advanced form of lung cancer and died at his daughter’s home in Bladen County, his friend Jay DeLancy told The Associated Press in a brief interview.

THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: Three still competing, one ending campaign in Mecklenburg’s most crowded NC House race
The eastern corner of Mecklenburg County may be cooking up one of the most competitive primaries in the region. The open race in the eastern corner of Mecklenburg County brought out two familiar faces — former state Reps. Tricia Cotham and Rodney Moore — as well as two new ones — Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools employee Yolanda Holmes and carpenter Johnell “Jay” Holman.


WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL: NC getting $171M to cut emissions; Triad gets $2M this year
North Carolina is set to receive nearly $171 million in federal funding over a five-year period for projects aimed at reducing vehicle emissions in the state. The money represents the state’s portion of $6.4 billion allocated through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Carbon Reduction Program, part of the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure and Investment Act approved by Congress and signed by President Joe Biden in November 2021.