BlueNC's blog

Thursday News: Quit wasting time

moorepuckered.jpg

VETO OVERRIDE VOTES FAIL IN BOTH HOUSE AND SENATE: In yet another attempt to scale back North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper’s coronavirus executive order that has kept some businesses shuttered, the General Assembly voted on two bills Wednesday to open gyms and skating rinks in the state. Both votes, one in the state House and one in the state Senate, failed to override Cooper’s vetoes of the bills. The House also voted on whether to override Cooper’s veto of two other bills. One would allow those with concealed carry permits to carry guns in private schools where people meet for worship. The other would have prevented the governor or local governments from prohibiting fireworks displays and parades to celebrate the Fourth of July. The House failed to override Cooper’s veto of either.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article244077992.html

Wednesday News: Gridlock

bluenccup-1[1]_0.jpg

GENERAL ASSEMBLY CAN'T AGREE ON SIMPLE PANDEMIC ISSUES: The House and the Senate remain divided over whether to extend the exemption to a state law against wearing masks in public past an Aug. 1 deadline so people can continue covering their faces during the coronavirus pandemic. There's also some concern over a proposal backed by the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association that would allow businesses to meet their obligation to enforce Gov. Roy Cooper's statewide mask requirement simply by posting a sign in their front windows. Lawmakers also are split on whether to give school districts the flexibility to start off the new school year with remote learning. Many are implementing plans to rotate groups of students through both in-person and remote instruction to limit the number of students at school at a given time, but state law currently says no remote learning is allowed during the first week of class.
https://www.wral.com/tuesday-wrap-mask-debate-school-restart-concerns-bowling-alley-win/19178978/

Tuesday News: Poison pill

bluencpills.png

GOVERNOR VETOES BILL THAT WOULD BLOCK TRANSPARENCY OF POLICE KILLINGS: “Senate Bill 168 includes a provision to change the handling of public records by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner which could have the unintended consequence of limiting transparency in death investigations,” Cooper said in Monday’s release about the veto. “While I believe neither the Department of Health and Human Services, which proposed it, nor the General Assembly, which unanimously passed it, had any ill intent, the concerns that have since been raised make it clear this provision should not become law.” Dozens of protesters have camped outside the governor’s mansion since last Monday, to call on Cooper to veto SB 168. They have expressed concerns that limiting public access to the death records could hide actions that happen in police custody. Some have said the lack of transparency would only serve to increase police distrust.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article244026502.html

Monday News: Silver lining

pipeline.jpg

DUKE AND DOMINION CANCEL PLANS FOR ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE: Duke Energy and Dominion Energy announced Sunday they are canceling plans for the 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline that was to run through eight North Carolina counties. The natural gas pipeline faced intense opposition from environmentalists, but planners had just won a U.S. Supreme Court case that would have allowed the pipeline to cross the Appalachian Trail. Costs were originally estimated at $5.1 billion, but ballooned to about $8 billion. In a news release, Duke Energy said it would advance its clean-energy goals with investments in renewable energy, battery storage, and other projects. The pipeline was to run from West Virginia through Virginia and North Carolina, including in Northampton, Halifax, Nash, Wilson, Johnston, Sampson, Cumberland and Robeson counties.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/business/article244015287.html

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

quillpen.jpg

LEGISLATIVE PARTISANSHIP TRIUMPHS OVER REAL PROGRESS FOR NC: Their top priorities: Playing election-year politics; Pointless partisan jousting with the governor; Token headline-grabbing that could leave public health at risk; and Providing more places for people to carry concealed weapons. In the midst of a very real pandemic, what they are not about is working with Gov. Roy Cooper to beat the virus and plan for the future; to best position the state so it can rapidly recover when the opportunity becomes clear; or even to set examples for healthful behavior. Republicans who refuse to wear masks in the Legislative Building are acting like children. Their actions and the dangerous example they set, is helping, not slowing, the spread of COVID-19. They jeopardize our state and nation’s recovery from the ravages of the coronavirus. They need to grow up. Legislators should be heeding the advice of experts who know what they’re talking about rather than yahoos on social media spreading deadly falsehoods.
https://www.wral.com/coronavirus/editorial-legislative-partisanship-triumphs-over-real-progress-for-...

Saturday News: Profiting from bigotry?

mikeadams.jpg

MIKE ADAMS GRIFTS HALF A MILLION FROM UNCW: In an email sent to faculty, staff and students, UNCW Chancellor Jose Sartarelli on Thursday announced that Mike Adams, a sociology and criminology professor at UNCW, would receive $504,702 for lost salary and lost retirement benefits. The payment was approved by N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein and the UNC Board of Governors, according to Sartarelli. Sartarelli said the school was faced with three choices, including retaining Adams as a faculty member and accepting the ongoing disruption while hurting the UNCW community and the school itself. Another choice was to attempt to fire Adams and face a lengthy legal process six years after the professor won a First Amendment lawsuit in 2014 that cost the school approximately $700,000, Sartarelli said.
https://www.thetimesnews.com/news/20200703/unc-wilmington-professor-gets-504k-settlement-with-school

Friday News: The adult in the room

cooperfrown.jpg

GOVERNOR COOPER VETOES 8 POLITICAL STUNTS: On Thursday, he vetoed bills that would have reopened bowling alleys, skating rinks, amusement parks, event venues and other businesses, as well as another attempt to get gyms operating again. He also vetoed a measure that would have prevented cities from using the pandemic as a reason to halt any local Fourth of July parades or fireworks shows sponsored by private groups. A fifth vetoed bill would have prohibited any governor from extending a state of emergency for more than 30 days without the approval of the Council of State, a group of 10 statewide elected officials. Likewise, the Council of State would have to sign off on any effort to shut down an entire business segment. "The Emergency Management Act clearly provides the Governor with statutory authority to direct the state’s response to a public health emergency that could affect the entire state’s population," Cooper wrote in his veto message.
https://www.wral.com/coronavirus/cooper-vetoes-slew-of-reopening-bills/19171981/

Thursday News: Homeless during a pandemic

homelessincharlotte.jpeg

10,000 EVICTIONS ARE WAITING TO BE SERVED ON NC RENTERS: As legal protections ended last month for renters facing evictions, affordable housing advocates and legal experts predict that North Carolina could see a wave of evictions in the coming months. Over 10,000 eviction cases are on file in North Carolina courts. Since the state eviction moratorium ended on June 21, hearings are being scheduled this month in Durham and Wake counties, said Peter Gilbert, lead attorney at Legal Aid of North Carolina for the Eviction Diversion Program in Durham. “Now that the courts are reopened, I suspect that we’re going to see perhaps record numbers of filings,” Gilbert said. In April, State Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley halted court proceedings, including eviction hearings, until June 1. In late May, Gov. Roy Cooper extended the moratorium until June 20 by executive order.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article243913017.html

Wednesday News: Let the sunshine in

bluenccup-1[1]_0.jpg

LAW THAT SHIELDS POLICE DEATH INVESTIGATIONS TO BE REVISED: “It may not have been anticipated by some, but SB 168 appears to invite less transparency into death investigations by Medical Examiners instead of more,” said Mike Tadych, a Raleigh attorney who frequently represents news organizations on public records issues. “It’s clear that our society is demanding greater access to information about deaths occurring while people are in police custody. Thus, it’s hard to reconcile making this change now.” If an unnatural or unexpected death is deemed to be under medical examiner jurisdiction, related records are then passed to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. Such records include death investigations by law enforcement. When those investigative records, which are exempt from public records law, leave law enforcement hands they become public. SB 168 would change that, mandating death investigation records remain confidential when they reach the medical examiner.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article243896002.html

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - BlueNC's blog