OPPOSITION MOUNTS TO RDU PLANS FOR UMSTEAD ROCK QUARRY: Opponents of a planned quarry on 105 acres of airport land next to Umstead State Park are hoping that a lawsuit filed in Wake County will stop the project. But they’ve also waged a public relations campaign against the quarry. And with local elections coming up this fall, that effort is becoming more political. On Saturday, quarry opponents held a rally at the park, urging people to elect candidates in Raleigh who will work to stop the project. Opponents say the four local governments should have more say about the lease, but so far none of them have moved to intervene. A proposal in the Raleigh City Council asking the authority to reconsider the lease failed when only four of the eight council members voted for it.
NC BOARD OF ELECTIONS WILL VOTE TO CERTIFY NEW VOTING MACHINES TODAY: The State Board of Elections delayed a vote Sunday to help determine what voting equipment North Carolinians use in future elections, deciding to wait 24 hours so the full board could be there for the decision. The board plans to convene again at 7 p.m. Monday when Ken Raymond, a Winston-Salem member who couldn't make it Sunday night, will be in town. The board must decide which voting equipment to certify, freeing county election officials across the state to buy new equipment. More than 30 counties use touchscreen voting machines called DREs now and need to replace them before the 2020 elections. Those systems don't meet state requirements, unless the General Assembly takes up pending legislation to delay the state's incoming ban on these machines.
GROUP FROM PULLEN MEMORIAL PROTEST OUTSIDE VIRGINIA ICE DETENTION CENTER: About 60 people from North Carolina traveled to Virginia this weekend to protest outside of a privately-owned detention center for Immigration Customs Enforcement. WRAL-TV reports that members of the Pullen Memorial Baptist Church traveled from Raleigh, North Carolina, on Saturday to Farmville, Virginia, to pray and demonstrate outside the facility. The Rev. Nancy Petty is the pastor at the church. She says people who are being held in detention centers are people fleeing violence and persecution. Petty says the United States needs to find a different way to respond to people who need help. Petty says these are concerns discussed from the pulpit in church, and members of the group were moved to take their beliefs on the road in protest.
TRUMP PICKS RABID LOYALIST RATCLIFFE FOR TOP INTELLIGENCE POSITION: Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Tex.), President Trump’s pick to serve as the next director of national intelligence, has made his name in Congress as one of the GOP’s most dogged critics of perceived anti-Trump bias at the FBI and in the special counsel’s investigation of his alleged Russia ties. But first, Ratcliffe must be confirmed by the Senate, where leading Democrats accused him Sunday of being Trump’s top pick because of his efforts to please the president. “It’s clear that Rep. Ratcliffe was selected because he exhibited blind loyalty to President Trump with his demagogic questioning of former special counsel Robert S. Mueller III,” Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (N.Y.) said in a statement. “If Senate Republicans elevate such a partisan player to a position that requires intelligence expertise and nonpartisanship, it would be a big mistake.”
TRUMP CAMPAIGN'S GO-BETWEEN WITH UAE AND SAUDI ARABIA UNDER INVESTIGATION: Between Mr. Trump’s nomination and the end of June, Colony Capital, Mr. Barrack’s real estate investment and private equity firm, received about $1.5 billion from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates through investments or other transactions like asset sales, Mr. Barrack’s aides said. That included $474 million in investment from Saudi and Emirati sovereign wealth funds, out of $7 billion that Colony raised in investment worldwide. An executive familiar with the transactions had provided The New York Times with somewhat different figures last year. Investigators have also questioned witnesses about Mr. Barrack’s involvement with a proposal from an American group that could give Saudi Arabia access to nuclear power technology. And they have asked about another economic development plan for the Arab world, written by Mr. Barrack and circulated among Mr. Trump’s advisers. Questions about whether Mr. Barrack complied with the Foreign Agents Registration Act, commonly known as FARA, arose during the Russia inquiry led by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, and were referred to the United States attorney’s office in Brooklyn.