Dome: McCrory weighing tax options

fromJanuary 24, 2013 

MCCRORY.NE.010713.TI

Gov. Pat McCrory held his first press conference Monday, January 7, 2013.

TAKAAKI IWABU — tiwabu@newsobserver.com

Gov. Pat McCrory said Thursday he was weighing four or five tax overhaul plans, but had not made a decision in which one to support.

“I will be playing a major role as chief executive in determining which tax reform model we will go after,” McCrory told a town hall meeting of the N.C. League of Municipalities.

He said it is important that North Carolina be competitive in its taxes, compared to surrounding states.

Later he told reporters, “we are looking at many different plans at this point in time. There are so many variables at this point, I am not at this point ready to make that decision.

“At a minimum, I want to be competitive with our neighboring states. But I also want to be realistic about what we can and cannot implement. I am looking at every single plan, out of the Senate and the House and probably out of the governor’s office too.”

Perdue packing for Harvard

Former Gov. Bev Perdue is heading to Harvard University this spring, where she will be a resident fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government.

Perdue, who left office earlier this month, will spend a semester interacting with students, participating in the intellectual life of the Harvard community and leading weekly study groups on a variety of issues.

Other resident fellows at Harvard this spring will be Charlie Cook, a political analyst; Karen Hughes, former undersecretary of state for President George W. Bush; Steve Kerrigan, chief executive officer of the Democratic Convention held in Charlotte; John Murray, former deputy chief of staff to House Majority leader Eric Cantor; and Keith Richburg, China correspondent for The Washington Post.

Mansfield drops party race

Former state Sen. Eric Mansfield has quit the race for N.C. Democratic Party chairman Thursday, citing family reasons.

Mansfield, a Fayetteville surgeon who lost a primary bid for lieutenant governor, said his mother’s declining health led to the decision, though he faced significant opposition from allies of the State Employees Association of North Carolina, which helped crush his previous campaign.

“It brings my family and I great sadness to announce that I must end my campaign for North Carolina Democratic Party Chairman effective immediately,” Mansfield said in an email sent to supporters Thursday morning. “As many of you know my mother has developed a rapidly deteriorating disease which requires my full attention.”

The move comes nine days before the Democratic Executive Committee is scheduled to meet to pick its new leader, and opens a candidate vacuum.

The only remaining candidate in the race is Randy Voller, the Pittsboro mayor and Chatham County Democratic Party chairman. Voller this week picked up the endorsement of Ben Chavis, the former national chairman of the NAACP.

Former Rep. Bob Etheridge, who unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination for governor last year, is being recruited by some party leaders to run for the post.

The embattled current chair, David Parker, said Thursday that he would not run. He will preside at the Feb. 2 meeting and hand over the gavel to the new chair.

Staff writers Rob Christensen and John Frank

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