Daily dose: Whining Skvarla edition

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McCrory administration blames GOP-led legislature for losing Volvo plant (Raleigh News & Observer) -- North Carolina lost its bid for a Volvo manufacturing plant in part because the Republican-led legislature hasn’t approved more jobs incentive funding, said GOP Gov. Pat McCrory’s Commerce Secretary John Skvarla. Skvarla’s comments came mere hours after Volvo announced it will build a new $500 million plant near Charleston and employ up to 4,000 people -- after offering about $150 million in state incentives.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article20695179.html

China owes NC companies millions in trade duties

But don't hold your breath:

Stanley Furniture Company, a High Point-based manufacturer, is owed more than $71 million and Hickory-based Century Furniture is due more than $5.3 million in uncollected duties assessed against overseas furniture manufacturers who “dump” products into the U.S. market at artificially low prices. The figures are based on estimates of past payouts of collected duties.

Take it from somebody who watched his industry crumble, due in a large part to Chinese non-compliance with royalty requirements: It doesn't matter what laws we pass or fines we levy, the Chinese will simply refuse to pay and continue to undercut US manufacturers and producers. How can they continue to get away with it? Because powerful US importers and retailers are profiting from the scam:

Daily dose: Surplus shenanigans edition

Let's not get giddy about that $400 million surplus (Fayetteville Observer) -- It wasn't that long ago that state budget analysts were warning that the tax-revenue flow was running behind estimates
http://www.fayobserver.com/opinion/editorials/our-view-let-s-not-get-giddy-about-that-million/articl...

That $400 million surplus? Your tax refund built that (Charlotte Observer column) --Democratic leaders in the N.C. General Assembly say higher taxes produced the state’s $400 million surplus.
http://www.charlotteobserver.com/opinion/op-ed/article20538801.html

Working moms and collective bargaining

Not unlike the adage, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," an employee's value in the workplace is in the eye of management. This reality goes to the core of why women are only paid 78 cents for every dollar their male counterparts are paid. Even if a woman performs excellently and generates healthy profits for the company, if she is a single mother struggling to pay her bills, her boss knows he doesn't have to reward her performance to retain her. And the farther away you get from areas with a lot of job opportunities, the stronger those situational bindings. It's also where unions are needed the most:

Daily dose: Moms need votes, too edition

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The status of women in North Carolina Poltiics (Meredith College news release) -- A new report examines the Status of Women in North Carolina Politics. Among the findings: · Women make up over 54% of registered voters in North Carolina but hold less than 25% of all appointed and elected offices; Women hold less than 20% of elected positions with taxing and spending authority in North Carolina; In the 28 most competitive 2014 political races, women raised nearly 30% more funds than men; In 44 North Carolina counties, no women serve as county commissioners; In 2014, 25% of the candidates in North Carolina elections were women – and 63% won their races. When women run, women win.
http://www.meredith.edu/about_meredith/college-research/women-nc-politics

The Results Are In.

The results are in.
A survey of school superintendents from around the state is now available. It remains to be seen what conclusions our NC policymakers will draw from these statistics.

Of the most significant issues facing our schools today, the respondents to the survey overwhelming agreed that teacher pay, insufficient school funding and teacher morale were at the top of the list of issues facing NC schools.

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