Jun 23, 2014

NC Politics in the News - June 23, 2014


When N.C. legislators debate a state budget, it’s usually behind closed doors. This year, GOP leaders are flirting with opening up the process – a bit.
Officials issued two memos late Friday with significantly revised forecasts of North Carolina lottery profits and the financial effect of proposed changes in how the games are pitched to players. The numbers are a key part in how the NC House wants to fund teacher pay raises in the next year.
After years of budget cuts, North Carolina’s public universities might see a glimmer of light as lawmakers work this week to finalize the state’s spending plan. Despite an early threat by the state Senate to force the closure of struggling Elizabeth City State University, the UNC system might fare better than it has in recent years, ending with a flat or slightly increased state budget, about $2.5 billion.
Medicaid is the $14 billion tail that wags the dog that is state government. Policy makers are looking for ways to change the health insurance system for the poor and disabled to make it a less erratic drain on state finances and improve care for patients.
John Ward, committee chairman of the American Coal Ash Association, said technology exists to transform the old, wet material stored in ash ponds into a finer, dry fly ash material commonly used in making concrete. He said a study conducted several years ago by a construction trade association concluded using ash to increase the durability of concrete “saves us over $5.2 billion a year by making concrete roads and bridges last longer.”
A state House panel on Wednesday approved a measure to allow the use of CBD oil for medical treatment of seizure disorders. Sponsor Rep. Pat McElraft, R-Carteret, was in tears as she explained in a House committee meeting the need for the bill.
With little debate, the House has approved changes to the state's environmental laws.
John Fennebresque, an attorney with McGuireWoods in Charlotte, has been elected chairman of the UNC Board of Governors.
Please contact the Raleigh McGuireWoods Consulting team if you have any questions or comments:
Harry Kaplan, Senior Vice-President
Jeff Barnhart, Senior Vice-President
Franklin Freeman, Senior Vice-President
John Merritt, Senior Vice-President
Johnny Tillett, Senior Vice-President
Kerri Burke, Vice-President
Bo Heath, Vice-President
Sarah Wolfe, Research Assistant
Katy Feinberg, Strategic Communications