NC Politics in the News

August 23, 2023

Pardon Our Dust

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SPECTRUM NEWS: The dog days of summer – prime time for tobacco harvest
The modern farmer and the process of harvesting tobacco — North Carolina’s cash crop of old — have both evolved thanks to advances in technology and machinery. While the intense heat this summer feels brutal, North Carolina’s tobacco fields are loving it and farmers say they need a good harvest after a hard season last year.

Economic Development

ISLAND FREE PRESS: Visitors spent a record $33.3 billion in N.C. in 2022; Dare County fourth highest at $1.9 billion
Buoyed by a rebound in the state’s urban centers, and supported by continued high numbers along the coast and the mountains, visitors to North Carolina spent a record $33.3 billion in 2022 according to data released Friday. The preliminary findings from an annual study commissioned by Visit North Carolina reflecting the economic impact of tourism on local economies across the state said Dare County had the fourth-most spending by visitors last year of $1.973 billion.

WITN: Governor announces Industrial Development Fund grants for two ENC communities
Governor Roy Cooper announced today that the North Carolina Rural Infrastructure Authority approved two grant requests to a pair of local ENC governments totaling $734,730. The RIA said the requests include commitments to create new jobs. The Governor also said a public investment in these projects will attract millions in private investment.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: NC Republicans pass charter school expansion over Cooper’s vetoes. Here’s what’s changing.
Charter schools could see a major expansion in North Carolina after Republican legislators approved two new laws on Wednesday over the objections of Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper. One new law would allow more students into charter schools and let counties pay for charter school construction projects. Another new law transfers approvals and renewals of charter schools to a board whose members are mainly selected by the Republican-controlled General Assembly.

ABC 11: Lee County joins 15 other school districts going against state law to start school early
More than a dozen school districts are taking a stand against state law by beginning the school year two weeks early. One of those districts is Lee County Schools. Parents, officials and legislators are divided about how to best handle children’s education while still giving them enough time to have some summer fun.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Downtown Raleigh state government building changes will be in NC budget
North Carolina’s state budget, when it finally arrives months late, could speed up changes to downtown Raleigh. Two well known buildings in the state capital are already having work done this summer: the historic State Capitol dome will change color, along with the rest of the roof, because the copper is being replaced.


AP NEWS: North Carolina’s governor visits rural areas to promote Medicaid expansion delayed by budget wait
With a Medicaid expansion kickoff likely delayed further in North Carolina as General Assembly budget negotiations drag on, Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper wrapped up a week of rural travel Thursday to attempt to build pressure upon Republicans to hustle on an agreement.

NORTH CAROLINA HEALTH NEWS: Treasurer: Study shows how hospital bills become medical debt nightmares for thousands of North Carolinians
Thousands of North Carolinians struggle under debt accumulated because they went to their local hospital for care and wound up with bills that were beyond their ability to pay. Even some people with insurance were overloaded with medical debt after seeking care.


ABC 11: NC Legislature overrides 6 governor vetoes, putting measures into law
The North Carolina Legislature voted to successfully override six vetoes by Gov. Roy Cooper on Wednesday afternoon, putting the measures into law. One of those was Senate Bill 49, the Parents’ Bill of Rights. After the Senate voted to override, the House later overrode the veto of SB 49, enacting the Parents’ Bill of Rights into law.

WFDD: North Carolina Republicans give final OK to legislation curbing appointment powers held by governor
North Carolina Republican legislative leaders finalized on Wednesday their efforts to curb the appointment powers of the governor on several boards and commissions, extending a yearslong struggle with Democrat Roy Cooper over who controls key panels within state government.


WSPA: Trash on NC highways costing more than $22 million, NCDOT says
Trash on the side of North Carolina highways is a costly problem. The North Carolina Department of Transportation is hoping to get your help, asking for volunteers to register for its 2023 Fall Litter Sweep, which runs from Sept. 16-30.