Schools don't need money

Pop-quiz: What could be worse than the recently passed House budget?

Answer: The new Senate budget!

The Senate released their budget targets this morning, and they confirm what we've been hearing from lawmakers for weeks - more cuts in the worst possible places.

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How Many Ignored?

Do you know how many 37,000 of something is? To give it a bit of context, we are talking the population of entire cities, or the number of patent applications filed in India last year, or, closer to home, the number of unemployed North Carolinians who have been waiting almost a month for their unemployment benefits to be restored. 37,000 is a really big number. So big, in fact, that you might think the members of the General Assembly who decided to lump unemployment benefits into a completely unrelated budget bill last month might be feeling some heat for their incredibly callous and cold-hearted political calculation.

You would, however, be wrong.

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Strange bedfellows?

After getting a turn-out call from our friend Connie Leeper of NC WARN, we did just that this morning for a rally at the Duke Energy headquarters before their shareholders' meeting. A good and spirited crowd on our side, with moving speakers highlighting the environmental depredations of mountaintop-removal coal mining, the dangers of nuclear development and dirty coal, the advantages for the environment and the economy of clean energy, and the less-than-commendable business practices of what could become our nation’s largest utility company with the Progress Energy merger. Some brilliant street theater, as well, lead by Mr. Monopoly and his whip-cracking henchman lording over cowed ratepayers who kept doling out cash on command.

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Coloring outside the lines

With ink barely dry on the House's budget proposal, many lawmakers in Raleigh are turning their attention to the upcoming redistricting fight that will soon consume the General Assembly.  What does this mean for you? Well, it depends what you look like, at least according to an article this morning on the website POLITICO.

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Budget Update

After only one short week of debate, the House is almost ready to vote their version of the state budget through.  Included in the $2.5 billion in cuts are drastic changes to the way almost every State agency does business.

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