NC General Assembly

Politics & Government
3:25 pm
Thu May 15, 2014

State Lawmakers Adopt New Rules Affecting Protesters

Credit Matthew Lenard

State legislators have redefined the rules laying out how people may gather in protest at the General Assembly.

They were approved by the Legislative Services Commission on Thursday. The measures are a rewrite of rules last changed in 1987. The updates prohibit activities that cause an "imminent disturbance," and they more clearly define what kinds of signs can be used.

Republican Tim Moore chairs the committee:

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Politics & Government
8:37 am
Thu May 15, 2014

Governor Pat McCrory Releases His Budget Proposal

Governor Pat McCrory has released his budget proposal.
Credit Jessica Jones

Governor Pat McCrory released his budget proposal yesterday, on the first day of the General Assembly’s short session. The $21 billion proposal includes raises for teachers and state employees as well new positions and equipment designed to oversee coal ash disposal. But it cuts about $49 million that would go to the University of North Carolina system.

As legislators walked into the General Assembly for the first day of this year’s short session, protesters- including a group of women called the Raging Grannies- were ready to greet them.

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Education
5:00 am
Thu May 15, 2014

McCrory Unveils Budget, Teachers Call For Bigger Raises

Credit Wikimedia commons

Governor Pat McCrory released his $21 billion budget on Wednesday, setting aside $262.9 million for teacher raises and state employees. 

The governor and lawmakers have made it clear that teacher pay will be a major priority for this year’s short session, which is a time meant for lawmakers to adjust the budget approved last year. 

Teachers held their own “day of action” on Wednesday, the first day of the session. They outlined their demands and concerns in a morning press conference held by the North Carolina Association of Educators.

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Politics & Government
5:00 am
Thu May 15, 2014

What Does The NC Senate Want To Do About The State’s Toxic Coal Ash Ponds?

A 2012 photo of a 2008 coal ash spill in Tennessee.
Credit Appalachian Voices / via Creative Commons/Flickr

The first piece of legislation leaders of the North Carolina Senate introduced in this summer’s legislative session looks at Duke Energy’s 33 coal ash ponds across the state.

That means that on Wednesday, their first day in session this year, the senate’s Republican leadership sent a clear signal that it’s a priority for them to resolve the state’s issue of toxic coal ash dumps. What they didn't send was a clear picture of how they want to resolve it.

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Politics & Government
9:52 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

Protesters Greet NC Lawmakers With Pots And Pans On First Day Of Legislative Session

A group of grandmothers who call themselves the 'Raging Grannies' were among demonstrators outside of the North Carolina General Assembly's offices on Wednesday.
Credit Jessica Jones

Dozens of demonstrators clinked and banged pots, pans and spoons outside of the North Carolina General Assembly’s offices in Raleigh on Wednesday morning, protesting recent state laws, as senators and representatives met for their first day in session this year.

The demonstration, in which people held signs protesting issues such as a Voter ID law passed last year, low teacher pay, and low unemployment benefits, served as a prelude for a series of demonstrations set for Mondays while lawmakers are in session.

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Politics & Government
6:07 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

Tillis Sets Legislative Goals While Under The Media Microscope

House Speaker Thom Tillis is being scrutinized while leading the short General Assembly session.
Credit http://thomtillis.com/

House Speaker Thom Tillis laid out his goals for this year's General Assembly short session Wednesday.  He said the ultimate accomplishment for lawmakers will be making adjustments to the state budget in a timely manner. 

Tillis said he and other legislative leaders hope their actions over the next several weeks will support the governor in his efforts to put some long awaited raises into effect.

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Politics & Government
5:34 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

Governor McCrory Unveils Budget Proposal

Credit Dave DeWitt

Governor McCrory has unveiled a $21 billion budget proposal that includes raises for teachers and state employees, promotes more oversight of coal ash ponds, and adds $50 million to the state's rainy day fund. But it also includes a $49 million cut to the University of North Carolina system.

"We’ve had to make some very very difficult decisions. Which we think will have a positive impact on the future. This budget proposal has already been shared with top budget legislators in the House and the Senate, and therefore nothing should come as a surprise," says McCrory.

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The State of Things
12:20 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

General Assembly Reconvenes

The General Assembly convenes today for the short session.
Credit NC General Assembly

WUNC reporters Jorge Valencia and Reema Khrais live from the Capitol

The short session of the North Carolina General Assembly begins today. Environmental issues on the table are coal ash disposal and fracking. Meanwhile, teacher pay remains a hot topic. Legislators will discuss Governor McCrory's proposals to update the teacher pay model. They'll also consider a bill that seeks to repeal Common Core.

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Politics & Government
4:59 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

State Lawmakers About To Begin Short Legislative Session

Credit Credit NC General Assembly

State lawmakers will return to Raleigh Thursday for the six-week short session at the General Assembly.

The short session's main purpose is to make adjustments to the state's budget, which operates on a biennial budget cycle.

But in this midterm election year, the General Assembly will be in the national spotlight. Republican Speaker of the House Thom Tillis is running against Democratic incumbent Senator Kay Hagan. And observers will be watching what he does.

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The State Of Things
11:58 am
Tue May 13, 2014

General Assembly To Reconvene To Tackle Controversial Issues

NC State Seal
Credit Wikipedia

The short session of the General Assembly convenes tomorrow to address some of the state’s most controversial issues: teacher pay, unemployment and coal ash disposal. All of the issues are framed by the ongoing debate over the state’s budget. Host Frank Stasio talks with WUNC Capitol bureau chief Jessica Jones about the latest in legislative activity.

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