Exec. Director Of Equality NC To Step Down; School Bus Crash Lands Student In Hospital

May 12, 2017

Chris Sgro, executive director of Equality NC and one of North Carolina's loudest opponents of House Bill 2, is leaving his organization later this month.

Sgro served as head of the gay-rights advocacy group for four years. His departure was announced Friday. Over the course of his tenure, Sgro led the group in expanding voter outreach and involving religious leaders in urban and rural areas with the group's work. He also spent time as a state representative in the North Carolina House after then-Governor Pat McCrory appointed him following the death of Rep. Ralph Johnson of Greensboro.

In a press release, Sgro says he's moving to Washington, D.C., to work for the national Human Right Campaign as communications director.

School Bus Crash Lands Student In Hospital

A CMS student was transported to Carolinas Medical Center after a school bus collided with a van Friday morning near uptown.

CMS says the bus was on its way to Morehead STEM Academy when the accident happened around 7:40 a.m. on the corner of South Mint Street and West Bland Street. The van's driver was also transported the hospital. Medic says the driver and the student had minor, non-life threatening injuries.

Four other students who were on board bus 412 were not injured.

UNC Charlotte Investigates Anti-Muslim Images On Campus

UNC Charlotte is investigating reports of vulgar images targeting racial and religious minorities being displayed in campus dorms.

Student body president Tracey Allsbrook and vice president Bryan McCollom posted a statement on social media Wednesday affirming support for Muslims and saying it's happened twice in the past two weeks.

UNCC spokesperson Buffie Stephens says the school knows of only one flyer -- a vulgar, anti-Muslim cartoon that someone put on the door of a suite where none of the residents are Muslim. University officials say anyone responsible would be subject to discipline under the school's code of conduct.

Senate Gives Final OK To Budget Plan; Debates Head To House

The North Carolina Senate has completed work on its state budget proposal for the next two years.

The Republican-controlled Senate gave final approval to its spending plan early Friday. The vote margin was similar to a party-line vote Thursday evening, when the chamber gave its initial OK. The budget debate next heads to the House.

The debate didn't finish until after 3 a.m. Republicans initially blocked several Democratic amendments, then went into recess. GOP leaders returned two hours later to approve an amendment allocating $2 million to expand a pilot program to address opioid addiction to more communities. The original pilot only covered Wilmington.

Democrats complained the approved budget provides tax breaks to the wealthy and to corporations, and they prefer Gov. Roy Cooper's spending proposal.