usna77 @
Saturday, February 1, 2014 - 6:40pm

Now it seems that it is OK for millions of gallons of raw sewage to spill into NC rivers without any public notification.

Reports are that some 3.5 million gallons of raw sewage from Burlington's treatment plant spilled into the Haw River on Monday night. State law requires that media outlets in the affected area are required to report the spill within 48 hours.

However, NCDENR supervisor Corey Basinger "felt that it was important to make sure that the public press release accurately represented the amount of untreated waste that entered the river and so, especially under these adverse conditions, allowed the city some extra time to make sure of the report's accuracy. Instead of the report coming out Wednesday night, it was released some time on Thursday."

usna77 @
Thursday, January 16, 2014 - 10:11am

Jane describes herself as a "moderate Democrat." She is the widow of former state senator and western district attorney Charlie Hipps.

I have known Jane and Charlie for years in Waynesville. She is an experienced educator, who went back to school at age 60 to become a Nurse Practitioner. She is smart, quiet, and tough, and will represent our mountain counties well. Furthermore, she has the name recognition to present a strong challenge and a reasonable chance to win the seat.

Jim Davis, on the other hand, is beholden to Art Pope after spending over a million dollars to win twice against former senator and judge John Snow.

Here is the writeup on Jane from the Smoky Mountain News yesterday.

usna77 @
Friday, November 1, 2013 - 6:15pm

Internal Debate Divides Haywood GOP reads the headline in this week's Smoky Mountain News.

No doubt veteran political observer Becky Johnson has poked the elephant out here in the mountains;

Some mainstream Republicans in Haywood County fear their local party is being hijacked by a far-right faction with extreme views on what limited government should look like.

County party vice-chair Mitchell Powell has resigned, saying that long-standing party members are falling away and refusing to contribute to local party operations.

usna77 @
Thursday, September 19, 2013 - 7:31am

Right wing reaction to the Common Core State Standards for K-12 education is an almost instinctive rejection of anything aimed to the "common good." Perhaps this "reject instinct" hearkens back to the Cold War, where communism, which sounds like "common" and shares etymology tracing back to the Old French "comun."

usna77 @
Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - 4:18pm

In an interview today, McCrory said he has concerns about how public has access to information on hires, including salaries, and said he feared that could deter qualified people from pursuing government jobs.

Full story is at

Amazing that apparently the "government of transparency" promised by McCrory is turning into a circus sideshow.

usna77 @
Friday, September 6, 2013 - 9:09am

Here is the email I sent this morning to Rep. Joe Sam Queen (D-Haywood) and Sen. Jim Davis (R-Macon).

Gentlemen: Care to comment on yesterday's report in the Raleigh News & Observer that one Joe Hauck was paid $228,000 over 8 months as a consultant to DHHS Secretary Alana Wos?

DHHS Spokesman Ricky Diaz defended the consulting contract in a statement. This is the same Ricky Diaz who, at 24 years of age and with absolutely zero public health policy experience, enjoys a taxpayer-funded salary of $85,000, including a $23,000 raise after a few months on the job.

usna77 @
Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 11:43pm

THATSRACIN.COM is reporting that the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte lost $1.6 million in 2012.

The NASCAR Hall of Fame is a $200 million public-private partnership, funded by occupancy and meal taxes through the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority (CRVA). It was a centerpiece of Pat McCrory's tenure as Charlotte mayor. As Deputy Assistant Governor, McCrory wants to extend this public-private partnership model to economic development across the state. Why exactly is that a good idea, except for those who end up with the money?

usna77 @
Wednesday, August 21, 2013 - 9:47am

Below is my blog post on my correspondence with my State Farm agent concerning ALEC.


I have been a policyholder with State Farm for auto, life, and homeowners insurance since the day I started driving. My parents were State Farm policyholders. Even when I was in the Navy, and could have had a better deal with USAA or other companies, I stuck with State Farm because of reasonable rates and good service. I have never had an issue with a claim or other matter with State Farm agents over the years.

Recently I learned that State Farm is a corporate sponsor of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). I sent an email to my local agent expressing concern. He passed that up the chain, and forwarded me the following response:

usna77 @
Monday, August 5, 2013 - 7:26am

I am looking forward to joining my daughter (a public school teacher) and her husband this evening in downtown Asheville as Moral Monday goes on the road.

Illegitimi non carborundum!

usna77 @
Sunday, July 28, 2013 - 6:32pm

Among the central government planning actions taken by the Radical Republicans in this session, the desire of Lake Junaluska residents to be annexed to the Town of Waynesville has flown somewhat under the radar.