The Crisis Intervention Program is a federally funded program that helps low-income families pay their heating bills in times of crisis. This year, the county received less money from the program. Funds were cut from $1.3 million to just less than $870,000.
Because of the reduction, the state came out with revised recommended guidelines for who would qualify for help.
Of course it did. Instead of looking for funds elsewhere, NC Republicans just shake their heads like they have no idea why this happened.
Gov. Pat McCrory’s administration is moving to change the government insurance program for 1.7 million of the state’s elderly, disabled and poor residents to a system where providers are paid set rates for each person they treat. As it is now, the government pays fees for each medical treatment or service.
Rep. Nelson Dollar, a Cary Republican and advisory committee member, said he was concerned about managed care insurance companies coming in to take over big parts of the Medicaid program. He asked whether insurance companies would be needed.
Adam Searing, director of the N.C. Health Access Coalition, has been critical of McCrory’s rap on Medicaid. Searing, whose organization advocates for low-income and working class people, was also critical of Atlas for not presenting what Searing said would have been a complete picture of managed care.
They don't want a complete picture. All they needed to see was "capped payments" and the love affair was off to a great start.
McCrory said exploration is part of a two-pronged approach to make the energy industry a sector that will help North Carolina come roaring out of the recession. The other, he said, is promoting power generation. Charlotte-based Duke Energy Corp. is the nation's largest electric power company. McCrory, who previously worked for Duke, said the state needs to look at tax policies that promote power generation.
The governor on Wednesday praised a law passed in 2013 laying out the regulatory framework for building wind farms to create energy. McCrory also said he wants to examine next year the balance between what he called subsidies received to produce renewable energy and the rates charged to consumers.
And when you do, what you'll see is the cost of renewable energy is a tiny fraction of what ratepayers are forced to pay your former(?) employer, compared to CWIP (Construction Work In Progress) and the recent merger fiasco. And when Duke Energy is finally forced to clean up coal ash ponds, they're going to (try to) charge us for that mistake, as well. But with Art Pope pulling your strings, I'm sure none of that will come up.
An annual report shows that more North Carolina teachers left their jobs in 2012-13 than in previous school years.
Out of the 95,028 teachers employed, 13,616 teachers left their districts, resulting in an overall state turnover rate of about 14 percent, or about one out of every seven teachers. That number is a slight increase from the previous year’s turnover rate of 12 percent and 11 percent in 2010-11.
While a healthy portion of those teachers moved to another district, that can be a red flag of other problems, such as low home ownership or a spouse being forced to take a job elsewhere. There are very few green flags associated with a high turnover rate.
Take the time to read this recently acquired confidential document if you want to get a propaganda-free tutorial on the shenanigans of the American Legislative Exchange Council.
And while you're doing that, take the time to contemplate the implications of the Speaker of the NC House trying to sit in two chairs at once. It can't be done safely, and when they start to roll away from each other, which chair do you think he will choose?
When you've finished those tasks, take the time to explore this new website, which is a handy tool for tracking how the assortment of conservative "foundations" fund various pseudo-scientific bullshit-producing stink-tanks, including our very own John Locke Foundation. But keep a small trash can or other vomit receptacle handy, as you'll probably need it.
The pollution is likely responsible for a 50% reduction in largemouth bass in the lake, says Dennis Lemly, an associate professor of biology at Wake Forest who written a new study of the lake's fish population. He says he has direct evidence that selenium poisoning is killing an estimated 900,000 bluegill in the lake every year.
He put the value of the fish killed at between $4.5 million and $7 million per year. And he said selenium leaching from the ponds is leaving thousands more fish deformed.
Of course Duke Energy disputes this study, even though they've known for years that the Sutton coal ash situation has been deteriorating steadily. And it's not just the fish that are being adversely impacted, Sutton leaks are ruining the water table in the area, as well:
All of the sudden it seems, the GOP leaders who cut public education and bashed public school teachers for sport during the last legislative session are getting all warm and fuzzy and talking about giving teachers raises.
But this is no “goodness of the heart” revelation. Surely the Republicans don’t believe that North Carolina’s teachers, or its residents, will buy the notion that a new age of enlightenment has arrived and that those champions of private school vouchers and an end to master’s pay have suddenly said to themselves, “Oh, my goodness! Our teachers are 46th in the nation in average teacher pay. We’re shocked, shocked we tell you!”
No, it isn't. And in the deepest part of their black hearts, they probably blame the teachers they've screwed for their own political predicament. Or like the DAG, they blame the media. Anybody but themselves will fill the bill. All that being said, the teachers really do need a raise. Even if it slightly blunts the voter outrage next November, I hope the GOP follows through with this.
If there's one thing at which we North Carolinians excel, it's beating ourselves up at our own expense. Either we're trotting off to court with ill-reasoned pleadings, or we're asking some judge to settle our political and ideological differences for us. Or both at once. I hope 30 University of North Carolina law professors won't go that far in their support of Gene Nichol, who heads the school's poverty center.
I agree that "Surveilling a professor's communications is a really troubling approach to protecting liberty," as the 30 wrote, although I'm unsure who injected "protecting liberty" into this debate. But I'm not at all convinced that it would make for a good lawsuit.
Which demonstrates, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you don't fully understand the subject matter on which you're editorializing. Civitas is (supposedly) a Libertarian organization, mainly concerning itself with promoting the free market, defending property rights and protecting individual liberty. A true Libertarian would shudder at the thought of collecting and analyzing someone's personal communications, especially when the only purpose of such is character assassination with the hopeful ending of the target's chosen field of employment. And that is exactly what this is, an assault on an individual who had the guts to speak out against an oppressive government. It's a shameful tactic, and deserves an airing in court.
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