NC General Assembly

Education
11:56 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Senate Republicans Offer 11 Percent Raises For Teachers Who Give Up Tenure

Senate leaders gathered for a press conference on Wednesday morning to release a plan about raising teacher pay.

Senate Republicans released a plan on Wednesday to provide what they call the "largest teacher pay raise in state history." The plan calls for an average 11 percent raise for teachers as long as they give up career status, otherwise known as tenure. Teachers who choose to not give up their job protections would stay on the current pay plan and not receive any increases. 

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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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Education
6:32 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

NC Bill Would Trim Funding For School Buses

Credit Dave DeWitt

 State lawmakers are considering a bill that would reduce funds for school buses over the next five years. 

The House bill would limit the number of spare buses and their replacement parts, while revising the state inspection process for school bus maintenance.

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Julia Howard (R-Davie, Forsyth), says the legislation would make school bus operations more efficient, while saving about $19 million in recurring funds over the years.

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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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Business & Economy
4:01 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Reynolds American Moves Ahead With VUSE E-Cigarettes

This package of VUSE Digital Vapor Cigarettes has a price tag of $9.99 plus tax, at the bottom.
Credit Leoneda Inge

Reynolds American is forging ahead with its electronic cigarette brand.  The announcement was made Friday in Tobaccoville.

Reynolds American CEO Susan Cameron says it’s time for everybody to have the chance to try out their VUSE digital vapor cigarette. 

“It it’s selling like hot cakes, you need more hot cakes,” said Cameron.

And Cameron had no problem whipping out her personal VUSE.

“Yes, this is a VUSE, I tried it, and I actually use it, it’s spectacular.”

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Education
5:16 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

NC Senate Pushes Forward Sweeping Regulatory Reform Bill

Credit Dave DeWitt

  The North Carolina Senate has tentatively passed a sweeping, 62-page bill that would make several changes to state regulations.

The proposal includes provisions that cover a lot of ground – everything from banning cursing on the highways to increasing penalties for parking in handicapped spaces or for violating endangered species.  

Many Senate leaders say the bill is meant to make state rule-making more efficient, while increasing protections for the environment and public.

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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
7:43 am
Wed May 21, 2014

NC Senate Committees Move State One Step Closer To Fracking

Lee County is one of the part of North Carolina that has shown potential for the extraction of natural gas.
Credit Donald Lee Pardue via Flickr

Two North Carolina legislative committees recommended on Tuesday that the state begin issuing permits in July next year for mining companies to extract natural gas in the state using a controversial drilling method known as fracking.

State lawmakers looked at different types of fracking legislation in 2012 and 2013. On Tuesday, the senate’s commerce and finance committees sent the bill to the senate floor for a vote. Sen. Buck Newton (R-Wilson) is one of the sponsors.

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Politics & Government
5:40 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

House Lawmakers Tentatively Pass Broad Tax Bill

Credit NC General Assembly

State lawmakers in the House have tentatively passed a broad tax bill that would limit the power of local governments to tax businesses.The bill would also tax electronic cigarettes.

The bill limits the authority of cities and towns to levy privilege taxes on businesses. Critics say the taxes are unwieldy and should be streamlined, but many municipal officials aren't happy about the measure, saying they earn significant revenues from those taxes. They would be capped at a hundred dollars per year.

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