Politics & Government

Politics & Government
7:55 am
Thu May 29, 2014

'This Is A Thorny Issue' - Senate Tentatively Passes Bill Ending Municipal Privilege Tax

Credit NC General Assembly

State lawmakers in the Senate have tentatively passed a broad tax bill that would continue to make changes to the state’s tax code.

One controversial section in the bill would eliminate certain taxes that municipalities currently levy on businesses. A House version of the bill that has already passed would only scale back- rather than eliminate- those taxes.

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Politics & Government
9:47 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

NC General Assembly Summary: Wednesday, May 28

Credit Dave DeWitt

North Carolina lawmakers continued moving quickly through their short legislative session on Wednesday. A brief summary on teacher pay, fracking and taxes:
 
Republican Senate leaders came out with a plan to raise teacher pay. On average, they want to offer an 11 percent raise. But teachers would only be eligible if they give up their tenure. Senators say the state would spend close to half a billion dollars, and are expected to elaborate today on where that money will come from.
 

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Politics & Government
5:16 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

State Lawmakers Tentatively Approve Bill Ending Privilege Taxes

Credit Dave DeWitt

State lawmakers in the Senate have tentatively approved a far-ranging tax bill that would end the ability of municipalities to levy special taxes on businesses.

The Senate version of the bill would end what's called the privilege tax. It brings in $62 million a year to municipalities across the state.

Business leaders have long complained that the taxes vary widely and are not fairly levied. Republican Senator Tommy Tucker, who's a small business owner, is in favor of the bill.

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Politics & Government
9:30 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Protesters Would Not Leave Thom Tillis' Office Last Night; Here's What Happened, Hour By Hour

The scene in House Speaker Thom Thillis' office in the middle of the night.
Credit Jorge Valencia

Fourteen people were arrested overnight at the General Assembly after sitting in and demanding to speak with House Speaker Thom Tillis. They were there lobbying for more than 10 hours with organizers of the Moral Monday protests.
 

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Politics & Government
5:00 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Tuesday Wrapup At The Legislature

Credit Jorge Valencia

The state legislature was busy yesterday, with Moral Monday protesters staging a sit-in and discussions over tax code changes and e-cigarettes.

Moral Monday protesters decided to come to the legislature yesterday even though it was Tuesday, the day after the Memorial Day holiday. They gathered on the back lawn and then began lobbying inside the building. They ended up staging a sit-in in and outside House Speaker Thom Tillis' office.

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Politics & Government
9:51 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Today At The General Assembly: Highlights - Tuesday May 27

Credit NC General Assembly

Lawmakers had a slower start to the week today because of the Memorial Day holiday. This morning, in the House education committee, lawmakers discussed ways to make school bus operations more efficient.

Around lunchtime, Moral Monday protesters gathered behind the building to hear speeches from North Carolina NAACP President William Barber and others. They plan to lobby every member of the General Assembly to reverse some of the laws passed last year. Earlier this afternoon, some protesters were going door to door to individual lawmakers.

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The State of Things
11:36 am
Tue May 27, 2014

NC General Assembly Short Session Update

North Carolina Legislative building
Credit NC General Assembly

NC General Assembly update

  Moral Monday protests resume as the General Assembly's short session continues. Protestors visit individual lawmakers today to lobby for Medicaid expansion, unemployment insurance and education reform. Last week, the North Carolina Senate approved a fracking bill and tentatively approved a regulatory overhaul. Both pieces of legislation may face challenges in the House. 

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Politics & Government
5:24 pm
Mon May 26, 2014

NC General Assembly Stories We’re Following: Week Of Tuesday, May 27

The NC Legislative Building
Credit Jorge Valencia

The biggest piece of legislation expected when North Carolina law makers return from the Memorial Day weekend is the Senate’s budget proposal for the fiscal year, which starts July 1. The office of Rules Committee Chairman Sen. Tom Apodaca (R-Hendersonville) said on Friday that a budget could be made public this week, and the office of Senate President Pro-Tem Phil Berger Jr. (R-Eden) similarly said a budget will be released “in the coming days.”

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Politics & Government
4:58 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

NC Closer To Raising Age At Which Teens Can Be Tried As Adults

Concertina wire surrounding a prison
Credit Kate Ter Harr / Flickr/Creative Commons

Yesterday, in the state House, lawmakers passed a bill that would allow 16 and 17-year-olds charged with misdemeanors to be referred to the juvenile justice system, rather than trying them as adults. The measure has been a long time coming.

The so-called “Raise the Age” bill passed 77 to 39 with broad bipartisan support. Republican representative Marilyn Avila of Wake County is the bill’s main sponsor.

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Politics & Government
8:11 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

NC Senate Wants Fracking In The State By July 2015, But House May Not Be Ready

Drilling companies would possibly extract natural gas from Lee County.
Credit Donald Lee Pardue via Flickr

The North Carolina Senate has tentatively approved legislation that would lift the state’s de-facto moratorium on hydraulic fracturing next year, but will likely be challenged by the House of Representatives and Governor Pat McCrory.

The bill, known as the Energy Modernization Act, calls for the state to start issuing permits for drilling companies to extract natural gas through the controversial drilling method known as fracking on July 1, 2015.

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