NC GOP

Fighting to keep Titan Cement air quality monitor in place

The anatomy of a deregulatory nightmare:

For Castle Hayne air advocates, the most worrisome proposals from the Legislature came this year. State legislators proposed to eliminate all air monitors that are not specifically required by federal environmental regulators and to limit citizens' ability to challenge air permits in court, taking away two important tools used by citizens to challenge projects they deem risky to public health. The changes were never enacted.

The air monitor provision would have eliminated an air monitor that lies across the road from the proposed cement plant and next to an experimental field for different varieties of blueberries. The monitor is 11 miles from downtown Wilmington and measures concentrations of ozone, particulate matter and other pollutants. The other provision would have hampered advocates' ability to challenge the cement plant permit's allowances of toxic air pollutants.

The battle over the Titan Cement plant is not about a handful of overzealous advocates trying to hold back industrial growth. The coal-burning monstrosity will increase the entire state's atmospheric mercury emissions by almost 10%, and it will be located in an area that is already saturated by industrial air and water pollutants. Read the entire article, it's a good one.

Shameless Dallas Woodhouse using autism for political purposes

It's a special kind of jerk who would think this is a good idea:

House Speaker Thom Tillis often wears an Autism Speaks pin and supported legislation this year that would require insurers cover certain treatment for autism disorders. The measure got tied up in the Senate and didn't become law, but that's not stopping Carolina Rising from running two ads thanking Tillis for his support.

The North Carolina-based group is run by Dallas Woodhouse, the former state director of Americans for Prosperity. It is a tax-exempt nonprofit that is not required to disclose its donors. According to Carolina Rising it is spending $2 million on the TV ads.

The only thing "rising" is the bile in my throat. Again, a regulatory system that would allow this kind of dark money to be spent is no regulatory system at all.

The Wos effect: Throw money at consultants until you run out

Eventually, one of them is bound to stumble over the solution

This information came to light at a legislative oversight committee meeting last week. Counting DHHS’ recent extension of a no-bid contract with consultant firm Alvarez & Marsal from $3 million to $6.82 million, the agency has spent more than $7.2 million on consultants over the past 20 months, the Journal reported.

This breaks down to $473 an hour for the consultant’s three principals; $394 an hour for five directors; and $242 an hour for each of nine analysts, according to a report by the News & Observer of Raleigh. Sen. Floyd McKissick, attending the meeting, noted that one of those consultants works out to $800,000 a year.

Right, but raising the minimum wage in NC from $7.25 to $10.10 would place an unnecessary burden on the job creators...

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