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Updated: 29 min 48 sec ago

The latest CEO pay outrages

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 14:20
The good folks at Inequality.org are out with the latest edition of Too Much Online and it includes a wellspring of damning new stats and findings about runaway CEO pay and the gaps between the super-rich and everyone else. The latest issue also feature a new and disturbing infographic on CEO compensation. Scroll down to ...

UNC Poverty Center shuts down, but work continues on at new group

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 09:25
The University of North Carolina’s Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity, in order to comply with a February decision by the university’s system governing board, shut its doors last week. The privately-funded center based out of the Chapel Hill law school, UNC Board of Governor Chairman John Fennebresque explained in an editorial, “was unable to ...

Not so fast on a dismissal of the state voter ID case, law’s challengers say

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 08:53
The parties challenging the voter ID provisions of the state’s 2013 election law changes in state court have asked the judge to put the case on hold until after the 2016 presidential primary, saying that only then will the merits of the recently adopted “reasonable impediment” process for voters lacking a photo ID be established. ...

As state lawmakers question the value of driver’s ed, locals raise a red flag

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 08:30
North Carolina legislators won’t resume budget talks for another week, but it’s clear locals officials are worried about public safety if the final spending package fails to fund driver’s education programs at our schools. The Asheville Citizen Times reports local school leaders acknowledge the need for the program, but can no longer absorb the costs ...

The real threat to NC beaches is not sharks

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 07:32
In the aftermath of the troubling shark attacks that have plagued North Carolina beaches this summer, there’s been a natural tendency to worry about the economic impact — both short and long-term — on the beach tourism economy. Bloody, weekly attacks by wild animals are not exactly what you call good publicity. As Ned Barnett ...

The least the NRA could do

Fri, 07/03/2015 - 07:45
As yesterday’s panic at a shopping mall in Fayetteville makes clear, average Americans are rightfully terrified at the idea of people openly walking around carrying guns in public venues of this kind. They do no want it and it clearly needs to be unlawful throughout the United States. Moreover, a completely clear and permanent ban ...

Largely run by for-profit corporations, Ohio’s charter schools misspend tax dollars—and lawmakers are letting it continue

Thu, 07/02/2015 - 15:20
Ohio’s charter schools—many of which are run by for-profit education management corporations—are notorious for misspending tax dollars and producing poor academic results. Lawmakers there had a chance to do something about it this summer by passing legislation that would strengthen charter school oversight—but that legislation ultimately failed. From The Washington Post: What happened? The bill — which, ...

North Carolina’s health advocacy community has lost a friend

Thu, 07/02/2015 - 12:29
At task force or committee meetings there is sometimes a strategy guiding where you sit. If an important legislator is in the room, for example, people will try to sidle up next to him or her to influence the policymaker’s thinking. As stakeholders gathered at the North Carolina Institute of Medicine for a seemingly endless ...

Sexual harassment case is a powerful reminder of why we need fair housing laws

Thu, 07/02/2015 - 10:14
In one of the myriad unexplained “special provisions” buried deep in the its version of the 2016-17 budget, the North Carolina Senate takes the remarkable and destructive step of repealing the state Fair Housing Act. As Sarah Ovaska-Few reported last week: “The provision, which would repeal the State Fair Housing Act and shut down the ...

Editorial roundup: Driver’s ed, SCOTUS decisions, Loretta Lynch, gerrymandering and the ACA

Thu, 07/02/2015 - 08:51
Editorial writers have penned several good ones across North Carolina in recent days. This morning’s Winston-Salem Journal is on the mark when it reminds the state Senate that driver’s education should remain in the public schools. As the editorial notes: “It’s not just a matter of money, but of public safety.” In an editorial entitled ...

Amazing new stats on growth in CEO pay evidence who is winning America’s class war

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 15:20
Researchers Lawrence Mishel and Alyssa Davis at the Economic Policy Institute released some pretty amazing new numbers today on the growth in American CEO pay over the last few decades: “Over the last several decades, inflation-adjusted CEO compensation increased from $1.5 million in 1978 to $16.3 million in 2014, or 997 percent, a rise almost ...

Still more sobering employment news for NC amidst national recovery

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 14:15
New from our colleagues at the Budget and Tax Center: Much of North Carolina has still not recovered from the Great Recession, according to the latest employment data for May. Roughly two-thirds of North Carolina’s counties have fewer people working today than before the recession, and almost a quarter of the counties in North Carolina ...

Editorial: Senate deregulation bill is “Polluter Protection Act”

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 11:40
In case you missed it, an editorial in this morning’s Fayetteville Observer rightfully blasted the state Senate’s latest outrageous effort to gut state environmental regulations: Some cynics are calling it the “Off-The-Wall Act of 2015.” Others suggest a better title might be the “Polluter Protection Act.” In both cases they’re right. And what happened to ...

Before legislators’ vacay, TAs have their say (Audio)

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 09:27
Today’s must read story comes from NC Policy Watch education reporter Lindsay Wagner, who profiles several of the teaching assistants who stand to lose their jobs if lawmakers adopt the Senate’s budget proposal when they return from a scheduled summer recess. Here’s an excerpt from Wagner’s story: As a part of their “Pink Slips Truth” ...

Gridlock starts to grip NC schools as lawmakers…head out on vacation?

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 07:48
Two stories really symbolize the state of North Carolina state government this morning on the first day of Fiscal Year 2016: The first is the gridlock that’s starting to grip the state’s public schools. With a final state budget agreement light years away and few clear indicators from state leaders as to where things are ...

Even McCrory administration thinks latest attack on the environment goes too far

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 16:18
Ever since Gov. Pat McCrory took office, the folks he’s put in charge of environmental protection have been doing pretty much whatever the state’s corporate polluters have demanded.  McCrory’s original DENR Secreatry John Skvarla did just about everything he could to turn the one-time watchdog into an industry lapdog. Now, however, even McCrory’s Department of ...

Head of teachers’ association decries possible end of health retirement benefits for future educators

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 15:01
“They’ve already taken away longevity pay, master’s degree pay, and tenure…and now they’re taking away retirement health insurance,” said North Carolina Association of Educators’ vice president Mark Jewell on Monday. “The General Assembly is saying to educators thinking of working in North Carolina: please look somewhere else. We don’t want long-term educators in our state,” said Jewell. ...

Berger’s hypocrisy on redistricting reform continues

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 13:39
This week’s Supreme Court decision that reaffirmed the constitutionality of allowing independent commissions to draw congressional districts prompted Charlotte Observer reporter Jim Morrill to ask Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger about legislation sponsored by a majority of the House that would create a nonpartisan redistricting process in North Carolina. Don't look for #NCGA to ...

ICYMI: Is the death penalty broken beyond repair in North Carolina? (Full Video)

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 12:52
If you weren’t able to attend NC Policy Watch’s Crucial Conversation with the nationally recognized Center for Death Penalty Litigation, that full program is now available online. Last week’s event featured CDPL Executive Director retchen Engel, Senior Staff Attorney Ken Rose and Associate Director of Public Information Kristin Collins. Please watch and then share this ...

Obama administration proposed rule will put more than $1 billion in the pockets of average Americans

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 11:17
As Think Progress reports this morning, there’s good news today for average American workers in the new proposed rule from the Obama administration: “On Tuesday morning, the Department of Labor released its proposed changes to the rules regarding who is eligible for overtime pay to expand the coverage to more workers. The proposal would increase ...

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