Bill would expand Margiotta's voting power

Staff writerMarch 29, 2011 

— RALEIGH -- A bill introduced Monday in the state House would change state law to allow the chairman of the Wake County Board of Education the power to vote on all matters, not just to break ties.

Introduced by Rep. Nelson Dollar, a Cary Republican, the bill eliminates a section of the 1975 law setting up the board that reads "but the presiding officer shall have no authority to vote except to break a tie."

Although constituted as nonpartisan, the current board has five Republicans and four Democrats. However, in several key votes since this panel's term began in 2009, Republican Debra Goldman has voted with Democrats. Allowing chairman Ron Margiotta a vote would add muscle to the GOP efforts to transform Wake County's 143,000-student school system, among the nation's 20 largest systems.

Representatives Marilyn Avila, Paul Stam and Tom Murry, all Wake Republicans, are co-sponsors.

Dollar did not immediately return a call for comment.

thomas.goldsmith@newsobserver.com or 919-829-8929

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