NC General Assembly

John Arrowood
James, McElroy & Diehl

Updated 1:06 p.m.
A battle between Gov. Roy Cooper and state lawmakers over the state Court of Appeals has escalated, with the governor's appointment of a new judge Monday. Cooper got the chance to pick a Democrat after a Republican judge on the court retired early to protest his party’s efforts to shrink the court. 

Several progressive and Democratic groups have organized the first candidate forum of Charlotte's upcoming mayoral race. The forum will feature all three of the Democratic candidates who've announced plans to run.

Republicans have eliminated or updated a variety of state regulations since taking control of the legislature in 2010. But in the past couple of years, they've found it harder to agree on reforms.

On Wednesday, the state Senate rejected the expanded House version of the GOP-backed 2016-2017 regulatory reform bill. It's got both years in the title because the two chambers also failed to agree last year before the legislature adjourned.

A wind farm near Elizabeth City, NC.
Sarah McCammon / NPR

Several Republican state senators are trying again this session to limit the expansion of wind power, saying new turbines could interfere with military flights. The bill filed Wednesday, the Military Operations Protection Act of 2017, would halt permits for new wind farms until studies show they are safe.

Former Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon becomes a free man Wednesday. The 50-year-old Democrat pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges in 2014 and was sentenced to serve 44 months in prison and to pay $60,500 in fines and restitution. His conviction stemmed from accepting bribes from undercover FBI agents while serving on Charlotte City Council and later as mayor.

The North Carolina Board of Education and the new state schools superintendent sat down this week for their first meeting. Republican Board Chairman Bill Cobey introduced his new GOP colleague. There was no hint that Johnson and the board are locked in a power struggle.

The disagreement is over which one of them is in charge of the Department of Public Instruction. Republican lawmakers say it's Johnson. The board says it's them. That struggle will begin playing out in court soon. WFAE's Lisa Worf joins Morning Edition host Marshall Terry now. 

Mayor Jennifer Roberts
David Boraks / WFAE

Charlotte city officials say they're disappointed that lawmakers failed to repeal the state's controversial House Bill 2 during Wednesday's special session of the legislature. The repeal could come up again during the General Assembly's regular session next month, but some city council members aren't holding out much hope.

The Rev. William Barber, president of the North Carolina NAACP, held a fiery press conference Thursday morning during which he condemned two recent laws that dilute the power of the incoming governor, and in retaliation, called for possible legal action and for the National NAACP to approve an economic boycott of the state.

"It's not just about robbing a candidate or a governor," he said, "it's about robbing the people of their power."

Davie Hinshaw / Charlotte Observer

It’s been another day of surprises with House Bill 2, Charlotte, and the city’s non-discrimination ordinance. The Charlotte City Council met again Wednesday morning to take action aimed at convincing state lawmakers to repeal House Bill 2.

That’s what council did Monday, too. Whether it’ll work still isn’t clear.

The General Assembly is meeting at this hour to discuss repealing House Bill 2, though the repeal effort was thrown into turmoil when rumors began circulating Tuesday that the Charlotte City Council had not fully repealed its entire nondiscrimination ordinance. WFAE’s David Boraks talks to host Nick de la Canal to help clear things up.

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