NC Politics in the News

May 2, 2022

Pardon Our Dust

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THE NEWS & OBSERVER: US cabinet secretaries focus on avian flu response, water infrastructure during NC visit
The nation’s top agricultural official told a roundtable of North Carolina farmers and industry officials Monday that the nation is more prepared to handle a fast-moving avian flu now than it was in 2015.

TRIANGLE BUSINESS JOURNAL: NC State’s $160M research space will host SAS, Bayer and other big names
A years-long effort at North Carolina State University culminates next week with the opening of a $160.2 million facility on its Centennial Campus. The 185,000-square-foot Plant Sciences Building will house researchers from various disciplines across the university, such as life sciences and engineering, who will work together to address some of the most significant challenges affecting agriculture in the state and around the world.

Economic Development

WBTV: I-85 in Rowan and Davidson now the site of increased economic development
The Rowan EDC says the opening of Chewy’s 700,000 square foot distribution center at exit 81 was perhaps the first domino to fall along the Interstate-85 corridor, while Macy’s recent announcement of a 1.4 million sf facility at exit 68 has been the biggest. Another large domino fell recently as Nucor Corporation, the largest producer of steel in the country, will invest $350 million in a new facility in Lexington off exit 96, just north of Rowan County.


THE RICHMOND OBSERVER: Leandro judge rules plan is underfunded by $785 million, won’t order transfer
The judge in North Carolina’s long-running Leandro school funding legal dispute calls for state government to spend an additional $785 million on education-related items. But he has jettisoned a controversial provision from a previous court ruling that raised constitutional concerns.

WRAL: Hunt-Lee Commission outlines ‘consensus opportunities’ to improve NC education from age 0 to college
The Hunt-Lee Commission, comprised of 35 leaders across the state, released a report on “consensus opportunities” for improving education. The Hunt Institute, founded by former Gov. Jim Hunt, partnered with current state Sen. Michael Lee, R-New Hanover, and former State Board of Education Chairman and state Sen. Howard Lee to create the commission.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER:  As early voting begins in NC’s 2022 primary election, tens of thousands cast ballots
As of Sunday morning, 66,001 ballots have been cast through early, in-person voting, according to data from the North Carolina State Board of Elections. That’s up from 37,477 cast after the first three days of in-person early voting in the 2018 primary election — the most recent statewide primary election without a presidential race.


COASTAL REVIEW: NC Aquariums join others in fighting climate change
North Carolina Aquariums have joined with other members of the Aquarium Conservation Partnership to work toward climate neutrality. The 24 institutions, which including the state aquariums at Fort Fisher, Pine Knoll Shores and Roanoke Island, along with Jennette’s Pier, will work to “leverage their outstanding legacy of leadership in conservation, science, communication, and education to realize climate solutions,” the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, which oversees the aquariums, announced Thursday.

WFAE: At a North Carolina energy conference, there are calls for climate equity
Policymakers along with business and nonprofit leaders are in Raleigh this week for a conference on North Carolina’s transition to clean energy. While technology and policy are key themes, some speakers want to make sure people of color and low-income residents are not left out.


WFAE: NC Republicans appeal ruling allowing ex-offenders to vote in November
Republican leaders in the North Carolina General Assembly are asking the state’s full Court of Appeals to temporarily block a ruling allowing certain felony offenders to vote while they appeal the case.

SPECTRUM NEWS: More North Carolina towns consider allowing drinking in new ‘social districts’
Albemarle, like a handful of other cities and towns in North Carolina, is considering creating a “social district” downtown, where people can walk around with open containers of beer, wine or another alcoholic beverage of choice. 


QUEEN CITY NEWS: NC colleges partner with health systems to help tackle nursing shortage
At Gaston College instructors play patients in the simulation lab to give students a unique hands-on experience in the classroom. Leslie Pressley, Director of Nursing Programs at Gaston College says it’s all a part of an effort to help get more students interested in nursing.

WRAL: NC wastewater data shows increase in COVID, yet hospitalizations remain low
North Carolina found more than double the amount of coronavirus in its wastewater last week when compared to week before, even though the state only saw a 24% increase in new cases.


NC POLICY WATCH: National prognosticators say NC Senate race will favor whichever GOP candidate emerges from May 17 primary
Absentee ballots are starting to roll in and in-person early voting began Thursday in this year’s U.S. Senate primary, an election in which nearly all of the focus is on the bare-knuckled fight in the Republican race. But even before that’s decided, the country’s top political prognosticators are out with predictions for the fall. All are in agreement that the GOP appears on track to hold on to the North Carolina Senate seat being vacated by three-term Sen. Richard Burr.

WRAL: Butterfield backs moderate Democrat Davis in race for northeastern NC congressional district
A centrist Democrat looking to fill the seat of retiring Democratic U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield secured the congressman’s endorsement in a race that could signal the ideological direction of the state party.

WASHINGTON EXAMINER: Thom Tillis continues attacks on fellow North Carolina Republican Madison Cawthorn
Sen. Thom Tillis has unleashed a fresh round of attacks on his fellow North Carolina Republican lawmaker, Rep. Madison Cawthorn. Tillis said Cawthorn has no right to tout an amendment to President Joe Biden’s $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill that brought broadband internet to western North Carolina, noting that the freshman representative ultimately voted against the legislation.


WECT: Park and Plug program adds new public EV charging station in Wilmington
Electric car owners can use a new Level 2 public electric vehicle (EV) charging station installed in the parking lot of a business on Oleander Drive opposite the NHC Arboretum. The new EV charging station was installed at Utility Management Services (UMS), Inc. in mid-April by Duke Energy as part of the Park and Plug program created to support the nation’s goal to reduce carbon emissions.