May 12, 2014

NC Politics in the News - May 12, 2014


Teacher raises and coal ash legislation top the agenda for the lawmakers and the governor. But expect battles over gas exploration, film incentives and more to mark the summer’s short session.
In a preview of the upcoming short legislative session, Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger promised that state lawmakers will continue along the same path it followed last year. He also endorsed Speaker Thom Tillis for U.S. Senate.
State legislators come back to Raleigh Wednesday for the start of the short legislative session, where the primary aim is to balance a two-year budget in the face of a Medicaid shortfall.
Now, as lawmakers head back to Raleigh on Wednesday for their short session, McCrory promises to be more of a policy force. “We will probably be more assertive than in our first year, which I frankly thought was extremely assertive,” McCrory says. “We had a heck of a good first year, but now I think we can take even more initiatives.”
Under a plan Gov. McCrory announced today, teachers would receive raises of 2 to 3 percent. They would also get other opportunities to earn additional money depending on what and where they teach, among other things. 
When it comes to crafting school-reform policies for North Carolina, elected officials can choose the path of least resistance or the path of greatest assistance. The easy path avoids controversy and minimizes political risk.
North Carolina legislative leaders don't believe they should be required to hand over emails and documents about last year's election overhaul law, despite subpoenas asking for them.
Democrats on Saturday elected Jeff Jackson to represent Mecklenburg County as the new District 37 state senator.
Thom Tillis, the North Carolina House speaker, won the state's Republican Senate primary on Tuesday, setting up a battle against Democratic incumbent Sen. Kay Hagan in the fall.
Clay Aiken, the 2002 "American Idol" runner up and current congressional candidate will eventually find out as he awaits word on whether or not he will be able to challenge Republican incumbent Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., this November.
Democrat Lorrin Freeman won easy victory in her party’s Wake County district attorney’s race Tuesday. A runoff is possible on the Republican side, where Jeff Cruden edged out his closest competitor, John Bryant, in a near-tie.
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Johnny Tillett, Senior Vice-President
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