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From the Progressive Pulse

The state Senate just voted 42-6 this afternoon to pass its latest smelly little gift to the hog industry.

Two particularly disturbing moments from the debate and vote:

1) When sponsor Sen. Charlie Albertson of Duplin County - in an attempt to demonstrate what an open and honest process preceded the bill's last-minute rush through the Senate - told his fellow senators that the industry had asked him to pass it last summer but that he had told them to wait. He then related that he had been working with the key legislative staff attorney on the matter for months and that the environmental groups have known about the bill since…June 30. Gee thanks, Senator! What could the environmental groups possibly be upset about?

There's more.

Find something wrong with this incentive package

The typical BlueNC post on corporate incentives is a rant against the practice of offering massive incentive packages to companies to stay in or locate in North Carolina - deals that ultimately won't impact employment figures or bring in tax revenues at a rate that makes sense. I think I've found an incentive package that makes sense and I've been working hard to find something wrong with it.

From CentreDaily.com:

Shifting sands

As many of you know, the North Carolina Senate has a long history of siding with special interests over the common good. That's exactly what happened when the Real Estate Lobby and Figure Eight Island millionaires teamed up last year to push The Inlet Stabilization Pilot Project bill through the Senate.

This bizarre and controversial bill would take a huge step back from the state’s existing policy prohibiting the construction of hardened structures (seawalls, jetties and groins) to protect private property. It passed the Senate overwhelmingly last year (quickly and without much notice).

re: op-eds

Memo from a longtime N&O reader:
First, let me just say that Bill Kristol is an idiot who makes stuff up.
Second, could you add a regular columnist to the op-ed page who is not a member of the nearly all-male glee club from the NYT and WaPo? There are a number of good writers out there, some of whom happen to be actual women.

Open thread: Taking action

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I know some folks are still recovering from the primary wars, but the General Assembly is in session and there's much work for citizen activists to be doing. Two issues on the BlueNC front page right now could really benefit from 10 minutes of your time.

Yadkin River Study Commission proposal

The Public Utilities Commission hearing on Duke Energy's Save-a-watt program

So instead of writing that next comment on this or some other blog, please consider spending a few minutes writing to the people making our laws to let them know what you think. You can bet the NC Chamber of Commerce, the Realtor Ticks, and Big Energy are doing their part to influence upcoming legislation. If we don't speak up for the common good, nobody will. Thanks.

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