The Obama administration’s plan to cut carbon emissions from power plants is drawing fire in North Carolina from Republicans and mixed reactions from Democrats.
First the news: The nation’s first limits on carbon dioxide, announced Monday, would reduce carbon emissions 30 percent by 2030, compared with 2005. Much of the reduction would begin in 2020. The proposal would let states decide how to reach state-by-state targets.
North Carolina’s power plants will be expected to reduce their carbon emission rates 40 percent by 2030, according to EPA figures.
Sen. Richard Burr issued a statement late Monday that criticized the plan. “Despite a weak economy, and the recent addition of staggering health care costs under Obamacare, the EPA and Administration want to add further strain on American families by implementing aggressive regulations that would cost 224,000 jobs and $3,400 of disposable income per household, without any effect on the global CO2 emissions.”
His Democratic counterpart, Sen. Kay Hagan, issued a more cautious statement late in the day saying she was still evaluating the proposal and what it means for the state and its economy. “I want to make sure that the proposal does enough to recognize the progress we’ve made reducing carbon emissions and promoting renewable energy,” she said, mentioning her efforts in the state legislature to pass renewable energy mandates. “North Carolina must not be asked to carry a higher burden simply because we had the foresight and courage to take action.”
It’s quite a contrast in tone with Rep. David Price, a Chapel Hill Democrat. “The Clean Power Plan will help keep the air we breathe and the water we drink clean, it will protect public health, and it will foster innovations and efficiencies that are good for consumers,” Price said in a statement. “After years when Congress has failed to act, I applaud the administration for taking an important step toward addressing climate change and for rejecting the false choice, advanced by some, that we have to decide between growing our economy leaving a cleaner planet to future generations.”
The issue of climate change and what to do about it gets mixed reviews in polling. In a PPP poll for an environmental group, 53 percent of North Carolina small business owners surveyed believe the state is feeling the affects of climate change. More here. A national poll finds red states are looking for action too.
At the statehouse, the House budget committees begin meeting at 8:30 a.m. to develop the chamber’s spending plan. With the Senate’s budget, the gulf between the two chambers starts wide. The House Education Committee is meeting at 10 a.m. in 643 LOB to consider a bill to replace Common Core standards. The House Transportation Committee will hear a long list of legislation at noon in 643 LOB. The House Agriculture Committee is at 1 p.m. in the same room.
The full House meets at 3 p.m. The Senate is not meeting again until Wednesday.
In Mount Airy, congressional candidate Phil Berger Jr. is promising a major announcement at 3:15 p.m.
In Washington, Sen. Richard Burr will join Sens. Tom Coburn, Jeff Flake and John McCain at 1:45 p.m. in the Capitol to announce legislation to address the wait time at Veterans Affairs hospitals.
From the story: InTouchNC has received more than $55,000 in payments from the campaign committees of dozens of state legislators. The company’s top client has been Moffitt himself, with the legislator paying his company $9,500 from his own campaign funds. According to Moffitt, he did not vet the idea of establishing the company with the State Ethics Commission, contradicting an early media report that said he had done so. A number of legislators who have received the company’s services have listed no expenditures to InTouchNC in their campaign finance reports. Moffitt said they are paying by other means. Read more here.
Slipped into the $21.2 billion budget, the measure is aimed at companies that profit by posting the mug shots online. It’s one of several provisions in the 275-page budget that does not appear to be directly related to government spending. Critics have lamented so-called “special provisions” in previous budgets saying they should be considered separately.
John Bussian, attorney with the North Carolina Press Association, said the provision could have far-reaching impacts on the freedom of the press. Read more here.
Richard “Dick” Lindenmuth, 69, will be taking charge of an entirely new method of economic development in the state by leading a quasi-public group funded with a mix of private and public dollars.
An N.C. Policy Watch investigation into Lindenmuth’s background uncovered federal court records showing that controversy has marred his career in recent years. He placed his Raleigh consulting company, Boulder International, into bankruptcy in 2010 and had his fiduciary abilities called into question by a federal bankruptcy judge in a separate incident. Read more here.
They had a letter they wanted to deliver, but Gov. Pat McCrory was not in the building and the protesters had not made an appointment. When the State Capitol Police asked everybody to leave about seven minutes after 5 p.m., the routine closing time, 11 protesters settled onto the floor for the second capital city sit-in this legislative session. ...
Glen Allen, chief of the State Capitol Police, said each demonstrator had been detained, then cited for second-degree trespass, a misdemeanor that requires them to go to court. Allen said he cited the demonstrators instead of arresting them because the procedure would not be as taxing on the courts. Read more here.
New documents released Monday say Cannon will stand before U.S. Magistrate Judge David Cayer at 10:45 a.m. to offer his plea to a single count of honest services wire fraud. The charge is commonly used in cases where public officials take kickbacks or bribes.
Cannon and his lawyers signed a plea agreement with prosecutors on May 8, but the terms have remained secret until they were unsealed Monday morning. Read more here.
Wake County will raise its teacher-pay supplement from the second-highest in the state to the highest. Read more here.
Raleigh, other cities license sweepstakes industry despite ban. Read more here.
N.C. State, state agriculture department invest big in new technologies. Read more here.
NC crime lab gets international certification. Read more here.