Politics

Local News
10:44 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

House And Senate Reach Deal To Slow Gas Tax Fall

Credit Rusty Clark / Flickr

Lawmakers in the North Carolina House and Senate have reached a compromise to stop a dip in the state gas tax, which would have led to deep cuts in the state Department of Transportation.

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Politics
9:58 am
Thu March 26, 2015

McCrory Says Sales Tax Bill Will Cause 'Great Harm'

Governor Pat McCrory addressing UNC officials on Wednesday.
Credit Gov. Pat McCrory

Governor Pat McCrory has now made it clear, he is against a Senate plan to redistribute sales taxes. And he’s looking for allies in that fight.

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Local News
5:31 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

Specialty License Plates, The US Supreme Court And NC

North Carolina offers specialty license plates with the Confederate flag.
Credit http://www.ncdot.gov/dmv/

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments this week in a Texas case that could resolve an ongoing legal question in North Carolina: can lawmakers here offer a license plate that says "Choose Life" but refuse to offer a pro-choice alternative?

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Politics
11:41 am
Tue March 24, 2015

City Council Considers Charlotte Photo ID For Immigrants

A poster in support of a Charlotte Photo ID
Credit Tom Bullock/WFAE News

The Charlotte City Council found itself on federal turf Monday night as it debated immigration policy. This after a task force submitted proposals to make the city more immigrant friendly and allow the city to better take advantage of Charlotte’s immigrant economy. There were 27 proposals in all. The most controversial: issuing a Charlotte photo ID to all immigrants who want one, whether they’re in the country legally or illegally. 

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Local News
1:36 am
Tue March 24, 2015

NC Senate Sales Tax Proposal Further Cuts Charlotte Budget

A Charlotte budget document from January shows projected revenue shortfalls under various scenarios. The bottom, dark-red line shows the elimination of the business license tax and the changed sales tax. Brown's actual bill would not create as immediate a dip, because it phases in over three years. At the time of the chart's creation, the city also had not yet been notified of a $10 million loss in property tax revenues, due to lower revaluations.
Credit City of Charlotte

Top Republicans in the state Senate Monday unveiled their proposal to shift sales taxes from urban areas to rural areas. The bill’s sponsor says it will help poorer counties, but it would compound the growing hole in Charlotte’s budget.


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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
5:27 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Senate Bill Would Allow Magistrates To 'Opt-Out' Of Performing Gay Marriages

Credit Ludovic Bertron / Flickr

A small portion of a magistrate’s job in North Carolina is performing civil marriage ceremonies. A bill that’s already passed the Senate would allow state magistrates and register of deeds employees to “opt out” of this part of their job if it contradicts their religious beliefs. This is all part of a debate over same-sex marriage. The legislation could have other effects if it becomes law.

Several magistrates in North Carolina resigned last fall. They didn’t want to marry gay couples, so they quit, citing religious beliefs. That’s why Senate leader Phil Berger introduced this bill.


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Local News
6:26 am
Wed March 18, 2015

Charlotte Budget Takes Another Big Hit; Carlee To Order Hiring Freeze

The loss of business privilege license tax revenue and lowered property tax projections have created a gap in the Charlotte budget.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

The city of Charlotte faces a gaping hole in the upcoming budget. A combination of state tax changes and Mecklenburg County’s property tax revaluation has city officials scrambling to plug the gap.


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Politics
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. 

Taxes

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Local News
10:07 am
Thu March 5, 2015

House Votes For Gas Tax Cut/Hike

Credit Rusty Clark / Flickr

The North Carolina House has voted for a slight drop—followed by a more substantial hike—for the state gas tax. Lawmakers have called the bill a stopgap.


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