NC "INFLUENCERS" CALL FOR BETTER FUNDING OF NC SCHOOLS: Public schools need to receive adequate funding to ensure the continued health of North Carolina, according to a new survey of some of the state's most influential leaders. A group of 60 North Carolina Influencers — comprised of leaders in the state’s political, business, academic and faith communities — were asked about the importance of 14 different education topics. Nearly all the Influencers listed adequate funding as being very important, saying that taking care of that issue would help solve a variety of other problems affecting the state's K-12 education system. "While many of these issues are very important, adequate funding is the most important," said Pamela Davies, president of Queens University of Charlotte. "If NC was funding K-12 education appropriately, many deficiencies in our system, including teacher pay and Pre-K, could be addressed."
AMIDST FAMILY SEPARATION NIGHTMARE, 48 NC IMMIGRANTS GRANTED CITIZENSHIP: North Carolina is rolling out a welcome mat for the nation's newest citizens. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services officials will welcome those new citizens during a special naturalization ceremony at the Fort Johnson Garrison House in Southport Tuesday. A U.S. Magistrate Judge will administer the oath of allegiance to 48 candidates. The ceremony is part of the agency's Independence Day celebration. This year, USCIS celebrates the 242nd anniversary of the Declaration of Independence as well as the nation's birthday by welcoming more than 14,000 new citizens in nearly 175 naturalization ceremonies between June 28 and July 10.
TRIANGLE HEALTH PROFESSIONALS DETAIL DAMAGE DONE TO MIGRANT CHILDREN: Local advocates said the level of stress and anxiety for immigrants has grown since Trump's election. The recent separation of families and immigration raids added to the stress and fear for those at the border and those living here, advocates and pediatricians said. The link between adversity and lifelong health was documented in the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study, which found that having four or more of 10 specific childhood experiences was associated with a significantly high incidence of substance abuse and illness. Young immigrants are being treated for bodily dysfunctions, such as bed wetting or changes in eating and sleeping habits, along with increased anxiety and depression, local pediatricians said. Other children act numb and detached, or start acting out, they said. Very young children may suffer extreme separation fears or develop brain-related disorders, like memory or speech problems, they said.
MICHAEL COHEN MAY BE ON THE VERGE OF TURNING ON TRUMP: After once boasting he would "take a bullet" for Donald Trump, the president's longtime personal lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen fired a possible warning shot toward the White House, saying he now puts "family and country first." Cohen, who hasn't been charged, wouldn't say if he would cooperate with prosecutors in the probe. But he also did nothing to dampen such speculation, taking issue with some of Trump's criticisms of the special counsel's Russia investigation and even going out of his way to praise the FBI. "I don't agree with those who demonize or vilify the FBI," Cohen was quoted as saying. The raid, he added, "was obviously upsetting to me and my family. Nonetheless, the agents were respectful, courteous and professional." Robert Mintz, a former federal prosecutor now in private practice, said that Cohen "has sent every signal he possibly can to prosecutors that he will put his own interests first and will jump at any deal that may save him from going to jail."
TRUMP REFUSES TO ALLOW FLAGS LOWERED TO HONOR SLAIN JOURNALISTS: The mayor of Annapolis, Maryland, says President Donald Trump has turned down a request to lower U.S. flags in the city to half-staff to honor the five people killed at The Capital Gazette newspaper last week. Buckley said Monday afternoon he was informed by Maryland Rep. John Sarbanes of the decision turning down the mayor's request. Buckley says he was only requesting that some of the capital city's prominent flags be at half-staff, and he's upset about the decision. He says he has been considering lowering the flags himself, but the Democratic congressman and his wife talked him out of it, saying protocol should be followed.