WITN: NEW RECORD: Agriculture economic impact hits $103.2 billion
The economic impact of agriculture in North Carolina reached a new record. Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler said for the first time ever the impact of the industry topped $100 billion, reaching a new record of $103.2 billion. That’s up from $92.9 billion last year. Troxler said agriculture remains the state’s number one industry, employing about 1/5 of the state’s workforce.
WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL: NC jobless rate slips to 11-month low of 3.4% in April
North Carolina’s jobless rate reached an 11-month low of 3.4% in April even with an unusual amount of churn in the 10 private-sector categories, the N.C. Commerce Department reported Friday. Most economists consider full employment at 5% — the point at which everyone who wants a job has one, employers have the skilled workers they need, and there is limited inflationary pressure on wages.
THE CAROLINA JOURNAL: Education funding in Senate budget: raises, safety, and school choice
The North Carolina Senate gave bipartisan passage (36-13) to their version of the state budget on Wednesday, with final votes slated for Thursday morning. Assuming the House votes not to concur with the Senate’s changes to the budget proposal they passed in April, the two chambers will “conference” to negotiate their differences and decide on a final budget. The largest chunk of the Senate’s nearly $30 billion budget is education. It includes substantial investments in K-12 education, with teacher raises, Opportunity Scholarship grants, a new school health personnel allotment, and safety.
EDNC: NCDHHS releases new action plan to increase ‘nutrition security’ across the state
Over 1 million people in North Carolina don’t know where their next meal is coming from. When looking at food insecurity for children, 17% qualify as food insecure. In an effort to decrease food insecurity and ensure viable nutrition for families, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services is rolling out a Nutrition Security Action Plan.
THE CAROLINA JOURNAL: Justice Morgan will not seek re-election, opening NC Supreme Court race in ’24
N.C. Supreme Court Justice Michael Morgan announced Thursday he will not seek re-election next year to a second eight-year term. That means North Carolina’s lone 2024 state Supreme Court election will be an open race. Morgan is a Democrat. Republicans now hold a 5-2 majority on the court. They could extend that majority to 6-1 with a 2024 electoral win. A win for a Democratic candidate would preserve the current 5-2 split.
THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: NC Senate proposes large hospitals cut costs to State Health Plan or risk being shut down
Hospitals in North Carolina’s largest counties could be shut down if they fail to meet a savings target set by state lawmakers for cutting costs to the State Health Plan, under the budget proposal Senate Republicans unveiled Monday. The provision, which Senate GOP leaders said in a press conference was necessary to bring about savings to the health plan that serves teachers and state employees, would require “urban hospitals to reduce healthcare costs to the citizens of this State as a requirement for hospital licensure,” the budget proposal states.
WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL: N.C. House could take up medical marijuana bill as early as next week
A bipartisan — and controversial — medical marijuana bill has been cleared to proceed in the N.C. House, potentially as early as next week. Senate Bill 3, titled “NC Compassionate Care Act,” was passed by a 36-10 vote on March 1 — the second consecutive year that the chamber approved the legislation.
SPECTRUM NEWS 1: Former U.S. Rep. Walker joins N.C. GOP gubernatorial field
Ex-U.S. Rep. Mark Walker formally entered next year’s race for North Carolina governor on Saturday, saying that he's best suited to win the seat that has eluded Republicans for much of the past three decades, by attracting a diverse set of voters in the closely divided state.
SPECTRUM NEWS 1: Popular rail route adding more trains between Raleigh and Charlotte
The number of passengers on the train route between Charlotte and Raleigh keeps growing, so the state plans to add more trains starting this summer. Beginning July 10, there will be ten daily trips between Raleigh and Charlotte, according to N.C. by Train and the state Department of Transportation.
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