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Statement on NCGA budget

Action NC statement on House and Senate compromise budget, released July 21, 2013:

The budget released this evening by the leadership of the House and Senate represents a betrayal of the relationship between elected representative and citizen. The Republican-led General Assembly took every opportunity to pursue blatant partisan goals and completely ignore the needs of their constituents. Special interests and well-heeled campaign donors benefited at the expense of taxpaying North Carolinians at almost every possible juncture.

Particularly egregious are the attacks on public education in the form of funneling public funds to private schools in a voucher program, and the elimination of teacher tenure. “This budget is literally taking money out of the hands of our children and handing it over to private corporations,” said Kevin Rogers, Policy & Public Affairs Director for Action NC. “With this action, the Republican majority is sending a clear signal that it is open season on public education in North Carolina.”

Action NC patently rejects this budget and calls on all North Carolinians to register their displeasure with their House and Senate representatives. This budget can still be stopped, and we urge the General Assembly to do so immediately. 

Click here to send a message to your representatives about this terrible budget!

Seniors Speak Out Against Duke Energy Rate Hike and Dirty Energy Plan

IMG_20130220_145453.jpgA hush fell over the courtroom as the elderly woman made her way, painstakingly, from her seat to the witness stand.  After swearing on a Bible to tell the truth, Cora Little sat and explained, with shaking voice, how coming to the South, and into the realm of Duke Energy's monolithic energy control, had changed her.  Gone were the beautiful fish she'd tended for years, a pastime she'd enjoyed since childhood.  She related, to gasps from the crowd, how she now cooks only one big meal a week, and lives off leftovers to conserve electricity.  She unplugs appliances and, deeply religious, can only read her Bible during the daytime.  At night, the only light in her home comes from a streetlight outside, which shines through her open door into the living room.  She fears she will have to cut back on the "prayer line" as well, which is her main contact with fellow believers--the phone uses electricity.

Sadly, her story was not the only such one at the Duke Rate Hike Hearing on June 24th. 

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Moral Monday: How I Got Arrested

Best-Activist-Luis-Rodriguez.jpgI didn’t go to my state’s Capitol to get arrested.  I wasn’t naïve about the situation; I knew getting arrested was a distinct possibility.  Though far more remote, there was another possibility.  Perhaps my representatives, my governor, and those legislators making a mockery of our voting rights, educational system, and state environmental policy would speak with us, explain themselves, and do what we pay them to do…listen.  Slim though the chance was, I went to tell my representatives my thoughts on these issues and implore them, as a citizen, as a voter, and as a person who must live with their decisions to employ some modicum of reason and perspective in their decision-making. 

Eighty-four of us entered the building for this purpose, with several hundred more in support.  Instead of being greeted by our representatives, who receive salaries our taxes pay and work in offices our tax dollars make available, we were greeted by the Capitol Police and told to disburse…that this was an “unlawful gathering.”  These people are public “servants,” paid by my taxes, and yet I was being told to leave as if I had no business being in my own house. 

I refused as any business owner, told by his employee to leave, would.  I don’t work for Pat McCrory, Thom Tillis or Phil Berger…they work for me.  They work for all eighty-four of us who stood there yesterday, and the hundreds who stood outside.  They work for the 5,500 government workers they will soon be laying off, the 70,000 citizens whose unemployment benefits they are cutting, and the 500,000 uninsured North Carolinians who, thanks to them, will not have access to affordable healthcare.   Any employee who treated their employer with this level of both disrespect and disregard would be fired on the spot.   This is a “Right to Work” state, after all. 

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Immigrants speak out: Proposed “RECLAIM NC Act” should be rejected

“Now hear this!  A People’s platform opposing HB 786, the RECLAIM NC Act

In the last few weeks, I’ve worked with community leaders and members of our organization, Action NC, and various partner groups around the state, to hold community forums in Spanish about House Bill 786, the “RECLAIM NC” Act, being considered now in the state legislature. In the forums, our organizations and lawyers shared information about exactly what is included in each section of the bill.  But the main goal of the workshops was to hear from immigrant communities directly THEIR thoughts and opinions on the bill. Participants had a variety of ways to express their views about these issues, including group discussion, Q&A and interactive activities like voting on various provisions as harmful or beneficial.

The following post comes to us from Hector Vaca, Charlotte Director of the progressive advocacy group, Action NC:

“Now hear this!  A People’s platform opposing HB 786, the RECLAIM NC Act

In the last few weeks, I’ve worked with community leaders and members of our organization, Action NC, and various partner groups around the state, to hold community forums in Spanish about House Bill 786, the “RECLAIM NC” Act, being considered now in the state legislature. In the forums, our organizations and lawyers shared information about exactly what is included in each section of the bill.  But the main goal of the workshops was to hear from immigrant communities directly THEIR thoughts and opinions on the bill. Participants had a variety of ways to express their views about these issues, including group discussion, Q&A and interactive activities like voting on various provisions as harmful or beneficial.

- See more at: http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/2013/06/13/immigrants-speak-out-proposed-reclaim-nc-act-should-be-rejected/#more-49318

The following post comes to us from Hector Vaca, Charlotte Director of the progressive advocacy group, Action NC:

“Now hear this!  A People’s platform opposing HB 786, the RECLAIM NC Act

In the last few weeks, I’ve worked with community leaders and members of our organization, Action NC, and various partner groups around the state, to hold community forums in Spanish about House Bill 786, the “RECLAIM NC” Act, being considered now in the state legislature. In the forums, our organizations and lawyers shared information about exactly what is included in each section of the bill.  But the main goal of the workshops was to hear from immigrant communities directly THEIR thoughts and opinions on the bill. Participants had a variety of ways to express their views about these issues, including group discussion, Q&A and interactive activities like voting on various provisions as harmful or beneficial.

- See more at: http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/2013/06/13/immigrants-speak-out-proposed-reclaim-nc-act-should-be-rejected/#more-49318

The following post comes to us from Hector Vaca, Charlotte Director of the progressive advocacy group, Action NC:

“Now hear this!  A People’s platform opposing HB 786, the RECLAIM NC Act

In the last few weeks, I’ve worked with community leaders and members of our organization, Action NC, and various partner groups around the state, to hold community forums in Spanish about House Bill 786, the “RECLAIM NC” Act, being considered now in the state legislature. In the forums, our organizations and lawyers shared information about exactly what is included in each section of the bill.  But the main goal of the workshops was to hear from immigrant communities directly THEIR thoughts and opinions on the bill. Participants had a variety of ways to express their views about these issues, including group discussion, Q&A and interactive activities like voting on various provisions as harmful or beneficial.

- See more at: http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/2013/06/13/immigrants-speak-out-proposed-reclaim-nc-act-should-be-rejected/#more-49318

The following post comes to us from Hector Vaca, Charlotte Director of the progressive advocacy group, Action NC:

“Now hear this!  A People’s platform opposing HB 786, the RECLAIM NC Act

In the last few weeks, I’ve worked with community leaders and members of our organization, Action NC, and various partner groups around the state, to hold community forums in Spanish about House Bill 786, the “RECLAIM NC” Act, being considered now in the state legislature. In the forums, our organizations and lawyers shared information about exactly what is included in each section of the bill.  But the main goal of the workshops was to hear from immigrant communities directly THEIR thoughts and opinions on the bill. Participants had a variety of ways to express their views about these issues, including group discussion, Q&A and interactive activities like voting on various provisions as harmful or beneficial.

- See more at: http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/2013/06/13/immigrants-speak-out-proposed-reclaim-nc-act-should-be-rejected/#more-49318
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Moral Monday: The Day After

Moral Monday: The Day After

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