Under the Dome

Dome: Sea-level science debunker goes to Coastal Resources Commission

Staff writersJanuary 7, 2013 

Former Gov. Bev Perdue appointed to the Coastal Resources Commission one of the leaders of the group behind legislation to slow sea-level rise forecasting in the state.

Larry Baldwin of Carteret County is a leader of NC-20, a coastal economic group critical of climate change science. NC-20 pushed to have the state calculate sea-level rise based only on historical events rather than predictions of accelerated increases.

Counties make recommendations on CRC appointments, but the final decision is the governor’s.

Baldwin is vice president of Land Management Group, a company that does environmental consulting and has lots of contact with the Army Corps of Engineers and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources about coastal development rules. Baldwin said some coastal county officials wanted him on the commission to fill the “coastal development” slot.

“I know they were concerned about trying to get as much balance as possible,” he said.

Scott Cutler, vice president of Clancy & Theys construction company in Raleigh, was appointed to the “coastal engineering” slot. The company has a Wilmington office and built Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head.

Gwen Baker of Wilmington was appointed to an at-large seat.

Their terms expire June 30, 2016. The appointments were among Perdue’s last.

One appointment that Perdue made to the same commission last week, didn’t take.

William Naumann, a former yachting company executive, was told Monday that he would not be appointed after all.

Naumann lives in Craven County as do two current commissioners, Bob Emory and Ed Mitchell. The commission’s rules prohibit more than two members coming from the same county.

That spot on the commission, set aside for a representative of marine-related business, remains vacant for now.

Last acts

Speaking of the former governor’s appointments. Before she turned the Great Seal of North Carolina over to Gov. Pat McCrory, Perdue appointed Pryor Gibson, her lobbyist and a former state representative, to fill a seat on the turnpike board. Perdue’s communications director, Pearse Edwards, will join CapStrat, a big-time Raleigh PR agency, as vice president of public affairs.

Less reading at legislature

In the constant jockeying for space in the Legislative Building, books lost out to talk.

The library, which straddled the House and Senate sides of the building in the Legislative Building, is no more. The space has been divided and turned into a conference room on the Senate side and into an office and conference room for Rep. Ruth Samuelson of Mecklenburg County on the House side. Samuelson has a new position within the GOP House caucus as conference leader.

The library in the Legislative Building was something of an annex. The library in the Legislative Office Building across the street had more books, research materials and staff.

The former library was handy, though, for checking legislators’ statements of economic interest, finding legislative committee reports and tracking down historical information on votes.

Materials from the Legislative Building library that the bigger library already had were recycled. The big library got the rest. Legislators divvied up the bookcases.

There’s no final cost for the renovation because the Senate conference room tables aren’t in yet. We’ll check back.

Dalton has new role: granddad

Dome wishes outgoing Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton a belated congratulations. At 11 p.m. on New Year’s Eve, he became a grandfather for the first time.

Staff writers John Frank and Lynn Bonner

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