Under the Dome

Democrats discuss issues in NC lieutenant governor race

The field of Democrats who want to challenge Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Forest next year is crowded, and the would-be challengers are starting to talk about their issues.

Robert E. Wilson of Cary, a retired state employee, wrote Tuesday about his “pro-growth agenda,” which includes creating workplace development agreements that would give companies tax breaks for training and employing workers.

Wilson was a well-known figure at the Legislative Building, working as a lobbyist for the Secretary of State’s office before his retirement.

“I really got to understand the full mechanics of state government and how it works,” he said.

The lieutenant governor presides over state Senate sessions, but votes only to break ties. The office has little power, but it’s a popular staging area for politicians who want to run for governor.

Ron Newton, a tax attorney in Durham, has traveled the state spreading the word of his campaign. Newton said his signature issue are “poverty and the appendages of poverty.”

Linda Coleman, a former state employee and state legislator, is raising money for another shot at the office. She lost narrowly to Forest in 2012.

Buncombe County Commissioner Holly Jones announced her candidacy last month.