A showdown between North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory and leaders of the General Assembly brought two former governors to a Raleigh courtroom Thursday to hear lawyers argue what could become a landmark case. At issue is whether the legislature has the power to appoint members of certain commissions or whether the governor has sole authority.
Gov. Pat McCrory’s budget proposal provides money to support a plan that he couldn’t get through the legislature last year – one that would change how patient care is managed under Medicaid, the government insurance program for poor children, some of their parents, the elderly and the disabled.
The day after NC Chief Justice Mark Martin gave a rare address to the General Assembly imploring legislators to invest more in the financially struggling court system, Gov. Pat McCrory issued a spending plan for the coming fiscal year that would provide far less than Martin requested.
Gov. Pat McCrory unveiled his proposed $21.5 billion budget Thursday, describing it as a conservative approach that makes cuts where needed in order to put money where it will have the most impact. The governor tried to keep the spotlight on education, emphasizing that more than $1 billion will have been spent on teacher pay during his first term in office, if the budget is adopted by the General Assembly. He said 56 percent of the budget would go to education.
Gas tax collections in North Carolina are expected to fall by several hundred million dollars over the next two years, under a statutory formula that pegs the tax rate to plunging oil prices. But in his transportation budget NC Gov. Pat McCrory avoids drastic cuts in state spending for road construction and bridge repairs. McCrory assumes the legislature will set the gas tax at 35 cents a gallon.
The governor’s budget doesn’t include across-the-board pay raises for state employees. But early-career teachers, troopers and prison guards would see raises, as would a variety of people in various state government jobs.
The budget’s biggest impact on the NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources would be the shifting of responsibilities that aren’t directly related to environmental protection over to the state Department of Cultural Resources.
Lee Roberts, NC’s budget director since September, steps into the spotlight for the first time on Thursday, when he’ll join Gov. Pat McCrory in outlining the administration’s spending plan for the next two years.
A bill filed Wednesday would change the way the Wake County Board of Commissioners is elected, resulting in each voter only being able to cast votes for two members instead of being able now to decide on every seat. Wake Democrats strenuously objected to the bill.
Despite opposition from some Republicans and Democrats, the state House gave initial approval Wednesday to Gov. Pat McCrory’s N.C. Competes jobs incentives plan in an 87-32 vote. Supporters say it’s an essential measure to lure an automaker to the state.
Lottery players in North Carolina who win big money on the games – from a Powerball jackpot to a $600 scratch-off ticket win – can’t keep it a secret, at least officially; but a House bill set for a hearing Wednesday would change that, requiring confidentiality unless winners consent to having their information released.
House leaders rolled out a plan Tuesday to drop the gas tax to 36 cents per gallon in April and keep it from falling below 30 cents in July, and they promised to figure out – this year – how to shore up the state’s anemic transportation revenues for the future. A committee approved an amendment to keep 500 jobs slated for cuts under a Senate plan.
Citing the frustrations of drivers who get stuck behind bicycles, mopeds and garbage trucks traveling far below the speed limit, North Carolina House members debated a proposal to let motorists drive around the slowpokes, even in no-passing zones. Critics warned that the change would lead to accidents.
Oops, you haven't selected any newsletters. Please check the box next to one or more of our email newsletters and submit again.
Oops, you didn't provide a valid email address. Please double-check the email field and submit again.