Tough talk on failed charter schools

But will they put those words into actions?

The draft policy also calls for imposing civil penalties on individual board members when the charter fails to turn over student records to the family’s new school. A penalty of $100 could be issued for each day. The state has had issues with some charter schools turning over student records when they closed.

When PACE Academy in Carrboro was closed by the state in 2015 due to financial issues, parents were clamoring for their children’s records. Adam Levinson, interim director of the state Office of Charter Schools, said the records were only recovered when the landlord for PACE called the state asking about what to do with the abandoned documents.

Here's a radical concept: You use taxpayer funding for your operation, then you should be held accountable when you screw up. And if you're on a board (be it non-profit) that pays you a salary, the taxpayers should be able to recoup some of that money if you fail in your duties to manage the defunct charter school. All that said, the school privateers in the General Assembly will not allow much more than a rap on the knuckles for their heroes, so the state Advisory Board better find a happy medium or risk a Legislative firing squad.

Thursday News: McCrory sandwiched edition

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MCCRORY GETS GRILLED BY LOCAL DELI (WCNC-TV) -- Common Market, which has two locations in Charlotte, posts food specials daily on Facebook Wednesday special for the Commonwealth location included the "Burn in Hell Pat McCrory" sandwich and the vegan "Pat McCrory hates teachers" wrap. The "Burn in Hell Pat McCrory" features cracked pepper turkey, smoked Gruyere, bacon, housemade super spicy mustard, onions, jalapeno, red peppers, pickles and spinach-- grilled, of course, for $7.75. The "Pat McCrory hates teachers" wraps up fresh avocado, tofu, spinach, tomato, onions, sprouts, sriracha, red peppers and cabbage for $6.75.
http://www.wcnc.com/news/local/plaza-midwood/mccrory-gets-grilled-by-local-eatery/185693049

GOP Legislators using threats and coercion on lobbyists

It's their default leadership option:

Lobbyists say they've been told – either directly by legislative leaders or by lawmakers' staff – that, if they or the businesses they represent speak out publicly against House Bill 2, they can expect retribution from House and Senate leaders. Legislation they want won't move, and other bills could actually target them.

WRAL News spoke with 11 lobbyists who have experienced or are aware of such actions, but none would speak on the record for fear they would lose business or be targeted for retribution. One has already lost business.

They just keep digging their hole deeper, just like a child who refuses to admit he was wrong. What these idiots don't understand: Threatening to "cut off" lobbyists and their principals merely highlights the fact elected officials normally do favors for lobbyists and their principals. Like I said, children, whose temperament and lack of reasoning skills very often cause them to reveal stuff they're trying to hide from us adults.

Wednesday News: Because Rowan County

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FEAR OF TRANSGENDER STUDENTS CITED IN ALLOWING HIGH SCHOOLERS TO CARRY MACE, PEPPER SPRAY (Charlotte Observer) -- High school students in the Rowan-Salisbury Schools can take Mace and pepper spray to school beginning in August. One school board member said the weapon could help ward off an attack in a girl’s bathroom as debate rages over North Carolina’s HB2 law and which bathrooms transgender students should use.
http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/article76920717.html

SCHOOL SYSTEM TO ALLOW PEPPER SPRAY TO CONFRONT TRANSGENDER CLASSMATES IN BATHROOMS. (AP) — A North Carolina school system has adopted a policy allowing high school students to carry pepper spray this fall, a policy one board member said may be useful for students who encounter transgender classmates in the bathroom.
http://www.greensboro.com/news/north_carolina_ap/north-carolina-school-system-to-allow-pepper-spray/...

Legislative alert: The attack on Solar farms continues

If this bill becomes law, you won't see any more renewable projects being built:

§ 143‑215.127. Setback and landscape buffer requirements.

(a) Setback requirements. – A wind or renewable energy facility shall be sited no nearer than one and one‑half miles from the property line of any adjacent parcels. The one and one‑half mile setback requirement shall not apply to adjacent parcels having common ownership with the facility or the parcel where the facility is situated.

(c) Landscape buffer requirements for solar farms. – A solar farm shall maintain a landscape buffer by installing native landscaping, including trees and shrubs, in a perimeter surrounding the solar farm and any equipment related to that solar farm. The landscape buffer shall provide the greatest degree of screening feasible and shall minimize visual contact with the solar farm for any adjacent parcels. For the purposes of this subsection, a "solar farm" means an array of multiple solar collectors that transmit solar energy and where the collection of solar energy is the primary land use for the parcel on which it is situated.

Bolding mine. It would need to be researched by active Solar farm developers in our state, but I doubt more than one or two projects to date would have met that 1 1/2 mile setback requirement. That alone is a lethal blow to the industry, which is obviously the goal of this bill. When they decided to amend the Statute that had previously dealt only with wind turbines, they tripled the setback distance from 1/2 mile to 1 1/2 miles. That's more than ten times the distance the state is requiring fracking wells to be setback from homes and surface water (creeks, lakes, rivers). Kill this bill, before it kills NC's Solar farm industry.

McCrory channeling the slave-masters of the old South

"States' rights" dogwhistle usually signals the loss of rights for somebody:

Such an attempt to change the dialogue from civil rights to states’ rights is nothing new for Southern conservatives. The question of whether the American Civil War was fought over slavery or states’ rights is one that continues to fire up the general public, though historians have long reached a consensus that the states’ right white Southerners wished to protect was slavery, and that without slavery there would have been no war.

Since I am a former history major myself, I really appreciate a solid historical spanking like this. But if you'll also notice, the author wisely avoided making the mistake that many others have (including some very intelligent journalists, by the way), by referring to those 19th Century bigots as "Southern conservatives" and not Democrats. Roles have reversed party-wise, but that screwed up mentality still exists. Here's more:

Tuesday News: NC on the wrong side of history, again

COUNTERSUITS OVER HB2 (New York Times) — The nation’s clash over the rights of transgender people escalated sharply on Monday as Gov. Pat McCrory of North Carolina and the Justice Department sued each other, testing the boundaries of federal civil rights laws in a dispute over public restroom access.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/10/us/north-carolina-governor-sues-justice-department-over-bias-law.html

U.S., N.C. SUE EACH OTHER OVER BATHROOM LAW (Wall Street Journal) -- North Carolina and the Obama administration filed dueling lawsuits against each other Monday over the state’s bathroom law, in a legal showdown that some experts said could settle questions of whether the Civil Rights Act protects transgender people.
http://www.wsj.com/articles/north-carolina-gov-pat-mccrory-asks-court-to-clarify-federal-law-1462805468

“I’m not going to publicly announce that something discriminates.”

McCrory's campaign advisors must cringe every time he speaks:

McCrory said the Justice Department gave him an unrealistic “three working days” to respond. “It’s the federal government being a bully,” he said.

Myers Park Pat is literally coming apart at the seams. The more he speaks, the more he shows himself to be painfully unqualified for the job voters gave him.

Monday News: Way out of his depth edition

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MCCRORY FORCED TO ADMIT THAT ‘BATHROOM PREDATOR’ MYTH IS FALSE (Media Matters) -- Gov. Pat McCrory (R) was forced to acknowledge that there has not been a single case in North Carolina in which transgender protections have been used to commit crimes in bathrooms, after Fox's Chris Wallace pressed him repeatedly.
http://mediamatters.org/blog/2016/05/08/gov-mccrory-forced-admit-conservative-media-bathroom-predato...

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