Politics & Government

Politics & Government
5:08 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

State Legislators Embroiled In Budget Stalemate

Credit bestclipartblog.com

Today is the first day of the new fiscal year, but there’s no state budget adjustment in sight. That’s because legislators can’t agree on two big issues: Medicaid funding and teacher raises. Last week, the House passed a partial spending plan that would’ve given teachers average raises of five percent despite the absence of a larger budget deal, but last night the Senate rejected the measure.

Read more
The State of Things
11:24 am
Tue July 1, 2014

State Department Documents Show Threats From Blackwater During Investigation

Blackwater helicopters in Iraq
Credit Heath Powell / Flickr Creative Commons

    

During the early years of the Iraq War, the North Carolina security firm Blackwater received billions of dollars from government contracts with the State Department and the CIA. 

But the business began to suffer in 2007 when Blackwater contractors opened fire in a public square in Baghdad, killing 17 Iraqi civilians. The incident severely damaged American relations with Iraq. Today, four Blackwater guards are on trial. 

Read more
Politics & Government
4:37 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Are The Arrests Actually Harming The Moral Monday Movement?

A woman is arrested at the state capitol as part of the Moral Monday protests.
Credit NAACP

The Moral Monday protests from Raleigh have garnered national attention over the past year. A key component of the protests has been media attention on arrests. Dozens were arrested this year for various non-violent offenses, a move some say is becoming an overt aim of many protestors.

Amy Laura Hall is a professor of ethics at the Duke Divinity School.  She has participated in the Moral Monday protests from the start, but she says the tactic of getting arrested -- or "orderly submission" as she calls it -- is flawed.   

Read more
Politics & Government
7:53 am
Mon June 30, 2014

NC General Assembly Stories We’re Following: Week Of Monday, June 30

The North Carolina Legislative Building
Credit NC General Assembly

North Carolina lawmakers say they want to break the impasse on a state budget this week. But those aren’t the only bills on their docket.

Leaders in the Senate and the House have been talking about Common Core and Coal Ash since they started meeting in May.

The Senate wants to consider keeping parts of Common Core, the national academic standards for public school students. The House wants to completely replace them.

Read more
The State Of Things
12:06 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Reflections From Former Chapel Hill Mayor Howard Lee

Buttons from Howard Lee's campaign for Congress
Credit Ken Rudin

When Howard Lee was elected as mayor of Chapel Hill in 1969, he made history. Lee was the first African American elected to run a majority white city in the south since Reconstruction. The post marked the beginning of Lee’s long career in public service. Host Frank Stasio talks with Howard Lee and political junkie Ken Rudin.  A timeline from UNC-TV traces Lee's long career in North Carolina politics and policymaking.

Read more
Politics & Government
8:31 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Iron Man 3, Hunger Games, Homeland, And The Tax Incentives To Film Them In NC

The TV show Homeland, and the movies Iron Man 3 and the Hunger Games were filmed in North Carolina.
Credit Showtime, Marvel Studios, Lionsgate

North Carolina could see fewer hits like Iron Man 3 or Homeland filmed in the state. That’s because tax incentives that encourage the film industry to make movies here are set to expire in January. Some lawmakers are trying to pass a measure that would give grants to the film industry to keep production companies here. But while budget negotiations are underway, time is running out to pass legislation.

Read more
Politics & Government
5:27 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

State Lawmakers Clash Over Medicaid Projections

Credit Jessica Jones

Governor McCrory and leaders in the state House are trying to speed up budget negotiations, but without much success so far. They’ve introduced a bill that’s a kind of mini-budget to give teachers 5 percent raises in case House and Senate leaders can’t agree on a comprehensive spending plan. But the biggest sticking point in the negotiations is over Medicaid. Thursday morning, State Budget Director Art Pope appeared before a Senate Finance Committee to answer senators’ questions.

Read more
The State of Things
12:05 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Mapping Inequality: How Redlining Is Still Affecting Inner Cities

The original Home Owners' Loan Corporation map of Durham, dated July 23, 1937. Red areas were largely African-American communities, and considered to be too risky for new home loans.
National Archives

After the stock market crash of 1929, Americans across the country were in danger of losing their houses to foreclosure. 

The federal government stepped in, providing bonds for homeowners to refinance their mortgages as part of the New Deal. But in larger cities, the government drew boundaries between neighborhoods that were eligible and ineligible for new loans. 

Read more
Politics & Government
8:44 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Governor And House Leaders Endorse Secondary Budget

Credit Jorge Valencia

Governor Pat McCrory and leaders in the state House have released a bill that would serve as a scaled-down budget proposal. The move is meant to shake up a slow budget process.

House Budget Appropriations Chair Nelson Dollar explained Senate Bill 3 to a packed conference room earlier today. Dollar said among other things, the measure would give teachers an average five-percent pay raise and state employees a $1,000 raise plus benefits.
 

Read more
Politics & Government
12:14 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

The Future Of NC Film Incentives

Iron Man 3 was filmed in North Carolina.
Credit flickr

Reporters Carol Motsinger and Jorge Valencia discuss the future of NC Film Incentives

Film and television production companies in North Carolina currently receive tax refunds of 25 percent if they spend $250,000 or more. The incentives expire at the end of the year unless the General Assembly reinstates them in the budget. Critics say the incentives are too high given a number of permanent jobs the industry creates. But a report commissioned by industry players shows the state receives a positive return on its entertainment investment. 

Read more

Pages