State Government News

NC FIRST Commission Virtual Fall Meeting

September 23, 2020

what:NC FIRST Commission Virtual Fall Meetingwhen:Friday, Sept. 25, 9 a.m.where:Streamed Livedetails:The N.C. FIRST Commission is making progress and will meet on Friday, Sept. 25, to review revenue and finance options to secure sustainable transportation investments in North Carolina.The commission is scheduled to hear a department update from Secretary Eric Boyette, receive reviews of its local government and finance workgroups from its members and have a demonstration of its new Creating Revenue and Finding Transportation Solutions investment tool.As the N.C. FIRST Commission begins to make final decisions, there will be more discussion to share ideas and gather feedback from commissioners.Commissioners and others will…

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Carolina Journal

Cooper may open Bank of America Stadium and other venues for some fans

September 23, 2020

By Julie Havlak Carolina Journal News Service Gov. Roy Cooper plans to allow fans at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte and other outdoor entertainment venues. At a Sept. 22 new conference, Cooper said he would move toward Phase 3 of his COVID-19 limits Oct. 2, when large outdoor event venues could reopen to 7% of capacity. Cooper said it was “likely, very likely” that next week he would reopen outdoor venues that seat more than 10,000 people. But he made no guarantees. Instead, he cited his continued surveillance of the state’s trends. Nor did he clarify how far the state…

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NCAE wants teachers to lobby against reopening elementary schools

September 23, 2020

By Lindsay Marchello Carolina Journal News Service RALEIGH — About half of North Carolina’s school districts are closed for in-person instruction, while the other half have students alternating between learning in the classroom and attending school online throughout the week. Starting Oct. 5, school districts can choose to let elementary schools fully reopen. Gov. Roy Cooper announced the change during a Sept. 17 news conference. The North Carolina Association of Educators, which is usually in lockstep with the governor, criticized the decision. The NCAE’s goal exemplifies the inherent tension between teacher unions and student needs, said Jonathan Butcher, senior policy analyst…

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Medicaid Expansion Would Create Yearly Funding Gap For North Carolina

September 23, 2020

Economic analysis shows expansion is not free to state taxpayers, as activists claim  Expanding Medicaid in North Carolina is a misguided and costly plan for our state, and would not be free to state taxpayers, as Gov. Roy Cooper claims. New economic analysis released by the John Locke Foundation reveals that expansion would leave the state with a funding gap estimated between $119.3 million and $171.3 million in the first year alone. The expansion funding gap would continue every year and could increase based on enrollment in the program and cost of the enrollees in the future. Multiple North Carolina expansion scenarios are…

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Department of Environmental Quality

Task Force Listening Session on Environmental Justice on Sept. 29

September 23, 2020

The public is invited to share feedback for the Environmental Justice and Inclusion Subcommittee of the Andrea Harris Social, Economic, Environmental, and Health Equity Task Force during a public listening session on Tuesday, September 29 at 5 p.m.  Task Force Chair NC Department of Administration Secretary Machelle Sanders will be joined by members of the subcommittee to hear comments on the draft goals which include: dedicated Environmental Justice, Equity and Inclusion resources in key state agencies, develop a framework to inventory the environmental impacts in aging public buildings and housing,  and evaluate needed changes to state law to better address environmental justice,…

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NCDHSS

NCDHHS Launches New Advertisements in Community-Based Print Publications to Urge North Carolinians to “Get Behind the Mask”

September 23, 2020

RALEIGH — The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services is launching advertisements in community-based print and online publications to amplify the “Whatever Your Reason” statewide public campaign and urge North Carolinians to “Get Behind the Mask.” NCDHHS has secured print advertisements in 21 of the state’s leading community-based print and online publications across the state, with an intentional focus on reaching historically marginalized communities most impacted by the pandemic. “Many of the publications we are working with are small businesses that have served as long-running sources of information for North Carolina’s Latinx and Hispanic, Black and African American and American Indian…

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Cooper’s permission slip does little to help this small town bowling alley

September 21, 2020

by Kari Travis Bowling alleys are finally allowed to reopen in North Carolina. But for small town operations like Fairwood Lanes in Roanoke Rapids, the governor’s permission slip may be too little, too late.  The financial strain is crippling, Fairwood Lanes owners Elizabeth and Timothy Robinson tell me Wednesday, Sept. 16, when I visit to watch their Superheroes league, a group for bowlers with special needs. The last time I dropped by Fairwood it was July, and the Robinsons were locked in a legal battle with Gov. Roy Cooper over his prolonged COVID-19 shutdowns. Fairwood Lanes, along with bowling alleys…

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N.C. Plant Conservation Scientific Committee to meet Tuesday, Sept. 22 via Microsoft Teams video conference

September 21, 2020

WHO/WHAT: The N.C. Plant Conservation Scientific Committee will discuss conservation programs updates, updates to the protected plant list, restitution costs for plant crimes and review a draft preserve management plan. WHEN: Tuesday, Sept. 22, 1 to 3 p.m. Meeting set-up will begin at 12:50 p.m. to log-in and establish connections. WHERE: In alignment with the Phase 2.5 COVID-19 guidelines, this meeting will be held virtually via Microsoft Teams video conference. The access link to join the meeting will be provided upon RSVP. BACKGROUND INFORMATION: The N.C. Plant Conservation Program develops regulations, voluntary programs and cooperative partnerships to help protect imperiled…

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Folwell waives insulin co-pays for State Health Plan, citing cost savings

September 21, 2020

by Julie Havlak, Carolina Journal News Service RALEIGH — Diabetic state employees soon won’t have to swallow the rising cost of insulin. State Treasurer Dale Folwell waived co-pays on insulin prescriptions for members of the State Health Plan, starting Jan. 1, 2021. Folwell hopes to save members $5 million. Insulin has become a flashpoint in the debate over drug pricing. The cost of the drug has nearly tripled since 2002, forcing patients to start rationing their insulin. Some have died. Others have gone blind. More than a million North Carolinians suffer from diabetes. Some 12,000 state employees use insulin, and…

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Troxler announces $2 million in funds for dairy assistance due to COVID-19 losses

September 21, 2020

RALEIGH – Grade A dairy fluid milk producers in North Carolina who suffered losses because of COVID-19 disruptions in the milk supply chain can soon apply for assistance through the COVID-19 Dairy Aid Program 2020. A total of $2 million will be available, with limits on the amount paid to producers. “The application period opens Sept. 28 and closes Oct. 12, which is a fairly quick turnaround time,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “Grade A dairy fluid milk producers will want to gather their information together now, so they can submit their application easily when the period opens.” COVID-19 created…

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