As recently as Jan. 21, information about climate change was available on the front page of the Division of Air Quality's website. Sometime in the last two months, the page was edited to remove the link. The link used to connect users to a page full of information and resources about greenhouse gases and climate change. That page no longer exists, either.
"We made these changes as part of our ongoing efforts to update, refresh and redesign our website," Mather said. "Currently, states do not have a lot of regulatory authority dealing with climate change. We do have responsibilities in several areas, however, and we still include that information on our website."
I wondered how long it would take for this to happen. When the people who run your organization are idiots, it's only a matter of time before the dumbing down begins:
McCrory, who worked at Duke for nearly 30 years until 2008, said financial decisions on the cleanup are best left to the state Utilities Commission, which sets electric rates and can agree to let Duke pass along one-time costs to customers.
“I think it's inappropriate to have politics involved in this process,” McCrory said after a Council of State meeting. “You've got to have this process work out free of politics, especially … as we try to get the facts exactly about what has happened and what the potential solutions are to this very serious issue.”
Duke Energy spent more than 1.1 million dollars to get McCrory elected. Politics have been involved long before the Deputy Assistant Governor was worn in.
Moffitt and Turner met at Travinia restaurant in Biltmore Park about 3 p.m. on Feb. 24. King, who has touted the fact that he has friends on both sides of the political aisle, acted as a go-between and was also at the table. The meeting was ostensibly a pre-campaign get-together for the two candidates to say hello.
But over an appetizer and iced tea – sweet for Turner, unsweetened for Moffitt – Moffitt asked Turner to withdraw from the race. Turner declined. The conversation continued, with Moffitt suggesting that Turner might fulfill a desire to serve the state through some other state job, according to sources familiar with the meeting. (Turner resigned his job as a vice chancellor at UNC Asheville to challenge against Moffitt, his first run for political office.) Moffitt went on to say that third-party groups he couldn’t control would “nuke” Turner and his family, according to the sources. Turner is married and has a daughter.
This is so far over the line I don't even know where to begin. The Republican leadership should ask for his resignation long before November's Election rolls around and, if they don't, the voters of the 116th District should reject Moffitt's extremely anti-democratic approach to keeping his seat. And no, I don't expect either of those things to happen, but it's nice to dream of a not-crazy world sometimes.
In documents filed in court and with the state charter school office, Mack, vice chair Jennifer Winstel and consultants hired by the StudentFirst board say Handford overstaffed the school, put family members on the payroll, failed to pay bills and document expenses, arranged big raises for herself and Moss, and let the school fall into academic disarray.
“Once operations were underway, we met monthly and received glowing reports from the school’s leaders – reports that we would later discover were mischaracterizations at best and outright fabrications at worst,” Mack wrote in his Feb. 19 response to Medley.
The court case is shaping up to be a big hot mess, but there's no doubt the financial stability of the school is in jeopardy. And the way the Legislature has designed oversight for these entities, taxpayers have very little control over how their money is spent.
Gov. Pat McCrory says his staff will consider making changes to a new law that offers raises to top teachers who give up tenure rights.
“I think it’s an example of passing a policy without clearly understanding the execution,” McCrory said.
McCrory says his staff will review the impact of the law between now and the short session in May. “I share some of the concerns expressed based on the implementation of the rule. The intent of the rule is very good -- the implementation process needs to be more clarified,” he said.
No, the intent of the rule is the root of the problem, not the implementation. The intent is to tear down the ranks of experienced teachers so they can be replaced by less-expensive and less-experienced rookies. And with those new teachers continuously worried about their short-term contracts, they're less likely to complain about having no new books or other needed materials. It's a policy of destruction, plain and simple, and it needs to be reversed.
It was the spring of 2013, and lawmakers were busy drafting more than 1,700 bills, including a handful that had big implications for companies that manage homeowners associations and condominiums. At the same time, a group called Alliance for Better Communities, which is bankrolled by property management companies, gave four donations totaling $51,000 to a nonprofit closely tied to Republican state House leaders.
There's a lot more to this sordid tale, but (as is almost always the case) the people slinging money around were able to do so legally. Proving once again, there's often a huge difference between "legal" and "ethical."
On the Dan, determining the health of low-lying river creatures such as mussels, clams, crawfish and dragonflies will determine the health of the fish in the river, and later, the birds and animals that feed on those fish. The fear, said Brian Williams, also a Dan River Basin Association program manager, is that the entire food chain along the upper Dan could be imperiled by the presence of coal ash and its poisonous heavy metals. (The Dan River stretches some 200 miles; about 70 miles is affected by the spill.)
Already, though, Williams described the river bottom on the Dan a mile or two below the spill as a virtual “kill zone” for macroinvertebrates because of the amount of toxic sludge that’s settled. At the spill site, there is a coal ash bar some five feet thick and 75 feet long. Coal ash has been detected along the river bottom some 70 miles eastward downstream — all the way to the John Kerr Reservoir north of Raleigh.
Even those critters who survive this calamity will absorb toxins and heavy metals, which will form a bioaccumulation chain that will eventually make any fish pulled from the river or Kerr Lake inedible. Or, more precisely, fish that shouldn't be eaten. Humans are also subject to bioaccumulation.
Four other communities in the state also launched municipal broadband. Such enterprises irked big-time providers enough that, after years of lobbying and a million dollars in campaign cash, North Carolina in 2011 passed a cable industry-backed law that makes it nearly impossible for any other municipality to do the same. (Time Warner Cable and CenturyLink did not return requests for comment.)
Two weeks ago, the Federal Communications Commission announced that it intends to take a close look at overruling such state laws, which restrict the ability of cities and towns to build their own broadband networks in 20 states across the country. The legal restrictions on municipal broadband are an “obvious candidate” for the agency’s scrutiny as it seeks to enhance competition, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said in a statement.
It's about time somebody stepped in to defend the rights of cities and towns in this state. Republicans in the NCGA have shown nothing but contempt for these smaller governments, and have allowed private companies to dictate what should be decided by local voters. Bring it on.
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