Local News
8:51 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Split On Incentives Reflects General Assembly's Geographic Divide

Credit Jim Bowen / Flickr

Governor Pat McCrory has made replenishing the state’s economic incentives fund one of his top, immediate priorities. This week Republican leaders in the Senate introduced their own plan, which differs significantly from the governor’s. It sets up a debate over incentives, but also falls into a larger, intra-party fight that’s as much regional as ideological.

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Local News
8:30 am
Tue March 17, 2015

New Train Facility In Charlotte Part Of A 'Grand Experiment'

A crane lifts a container onto a train at the Charlotte intermodal facilty.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

For decades, trucks have dominated as the main transporter of goods inland, but trains are picking up steam, and Charlotte is part of an ambitious plan by one railway to pick up even more.

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8:04 pm
Fri March 13, 2015

A Greater Grant? Bills Look To Boost State Money For Film And TV

Twin bills in the North Carolina House and Senate would increase the grant program from $10 million per year to $66 million per year.
Credit NC General Assembly

North Carolina’s new film grant program is just 72 days old. But already there are two bills aiming to change how much money the state can offer TV and movie productions in order to lure them to the state. 

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Local News
9:15 am
Fri March 6, 2015

From Politics To ‘Moonshining’—Former Congressional Aides Fire Up the Still

Thomas Thacker, former Congressmsan Larry Kissell's aide is part owner in Southern Grace Distilleries in Concord. Thacker holding the company's first moonshine product, Sun Dog 130.
Gwendolyn Glenn/WFAE

  In the early 1940s, television audiences were entertained by the antics of the cantankerous television and cartoon moonshiner "Snuffy Smith." He was known for hiding his moonshine stills in the woods and making toe-curling white corn whiskey under the cover of night.

These days, no shoot-outs are called for because with the proper permits, moonshining is legal in North Carolina. The distillers are more sophisticated, such as a trio who worked for former North Carolina Congressman Larry Kissell. They opened a new distillery in Concord this year and are turning out moonshine while keeping in touch with their political roots.

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Local News
11:06 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Teacher Raises, College Cuts, Zoo Swap In McCrory Budget

A slide from the governor's budget presentation shows the breakdown of General Fund revenues between agencies. It does not include federal funds or other fees, including the gas tax, which fuels the state transportation budget.
Credit NC Office of State Budget and Management

Governor Pat McCrory released his budget plan, his proposal for how the state should spend money for the next two years. It distributes more than $45 billion from the state’s general fund, or more than $100 billion when including all the other fees, federal dollars, and various revenue streams the state uses to fund services. The final budget may look quite a bit different once state lawmakers are through, but this proposal is where the debate begins. 


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Local News
4:34 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

Economic Incentives Move Toward Final Vote In NC House

Credit Jim Bowen / Flickr

A bill containing tax breaks to lure businesses to North Carolina passed its first vote in the state House of Representatives, although it divided both parties. The bill expands several economic incentives, but sponsors emphasized one goal in particular: to lure a carmaker to the state.

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Local News
10:44 am
Thu February 26, 2015

Dollar Tree CEO Discusses The Future Of Family Dollar

Credit Jennifer Lang / WFAE

Dollar Tree hopes to finalize its acquisition of Family Dollar by the end of April. Dollar Tree CEO Bob Sasser outlined the company’s strategy for integrating the two companies on a call with investors Wednesday. 

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Local News
8:03 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

Falling Earnings And A Coal Ash Settlement: Upbeat News For Duke Energy?

Duke Energy saw earnings fall last year, and it expects lower earnings than analysts have projected next year. Still, many on the company’s earnings call Wednesday were upbeat.

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Local News
7:52 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

Report Finds NC Incentive Program 'Fails'

The NC Justice Center's report "Picking Losers" says the state's main economic development incentive program is ineffective. This chart from the report shows the percent of projects terminated by county.
Credit NC Justice Center

Governor Pat McCrory wants lawmakers to give his administration more money to lure businesses to the state. The state’s main fund, the Job Development Investment Grant program, is nearly out of money. But, a new report from the liberal North Carolina Justice Center argues the JDIG program is ineffective. WFAE’s Ben Bradford joined All Things Considered host Mark Rumsey.

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Local News
6:43 pm
Mon February 9, 2015

New Purchase Puts Duke Energy In Rooftop Solar Business

An IKEA in Sweetwater, Florida uses a solar array installed by REC Solar.
Credit REC Solar

Duke Energy has expanded its investment in solar energy, and will enter a new facet of the industry: solar panels on the roofs of businesses.

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