NC GOP

NC's Innovative School District program suffering mysterious turnover rate

And nobody wants to fess up as to the causes:

LaTeesa Allen took over as superintendent of the ISD after Eric Hall, the first superintendent, left for a job in Florida. That was February. In response to inquiries from EducationNC, Dave Prickett, head of communications for the ISD, said that Allen’s last day was June 28. That is all he said. Meanwhile, in addition to Allen’s departure, the principal of the sole ISD school — Southside-Ashpole Elementary in Robeson County — has also left.

In interviews for an article about Southside-Ashpole published in March on EducationNC, neither Major nor Allen gave any indication that they were thinking about leaving.

"Rats fleeing a sinking ship" comes to mind, but it could also be something as simple as a management company being too tight with resources. That second thing has always concerned me about Charter Schools, because the governing boards are usually made up of business people, as opposed to educators, and cutting costs *always* emerges as a top priority with those folks. But honestly, the very nature of the ISD approach is wrong-headed, and amounts to a hostile takeover of public schools:

Winston-Salem rally for migrants part of national effort

The humanitarian crisis is only getting worse:

“We as Americans will no longer stay silent when our government is committing atrocities across our land,” Billingsley-Hayes said. “It saddens me (that) in 2019, we have to gather for this reason. Immigrants come to this country for hope and freedom.”

The local rally was part of the Lights for Liberty vigils that were scheduled to take place in 700 communities Friday to highlight conditions in the detention centers. At least five children have died in Border Control custody, or after being released, since December, according to The Associated Press.

How did we get to this point? Comments from a soulless automaton and a feckless coward might shed some light on that:

Offshore drilling opponents on the coast get boost from Asheville

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Would that all NC's major cities show the same support:

Since the spring of 2017 when a shift in policy by the Trump administration caused the prospect of offshore oil and gas exploration off the North Carolina coast to reemerge as real possibility, local governments from Currituck to Calabash have steadily weighed in, passing resolutions in opposition and in some cases multiple times. About 40 of the coastal region’s municipalities and all but two coastal county boards — Carteret and Brunswick — have put their opposition to paper.

One of the latest additions to that list, however, could be a sign that other parts of the state are lining up against new leases as well. In late April, the Asheville City Council unanimously passed a resolution against both offshore drilling and seismic testing.

Aside from Lousiana's Mississippi Delta region, I'm not sure there is another state whose coastal area is as vulnerable to toxic spills as North Carolina's. Spilled oil could (and would) easily migrate deep into our tidal wetlands, and there's no fixing that. It would be devastating to not only fish and other waterborne species, but also migrating birds. Having Cooper in the Governor's mansion is a huge relief, especially considering McCrory turned his office into the damn headquarters of the drilling effort:

GOP war on women: Cyberstalker Cody Henson gets 3rd continuance

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The Republican leadership's lust for power has no shame:

Henson had a first court appearance on the Class 2 misdemeanor charge on March 28, when his hearing was set for May 2. On May 2, Henson received his first continuance to June 26. On June 26, the case was continued a second time to Tuesday, when it was continued a third time to July 23.

Interviewed outside the Transylvania County courthouse Tuesday by Carolina Public Press, the lawmaker’s attorney, J. Michael Edney, attributed the delay to legislative necessity. “They needed him in Raleigh,” said Edney, who is also a county commissioner in Henderson County.

Compare and contrast: One lawmaker who is suffering from cancer sets aside her pain and weakness to do her duty, while another uses duty as an excuse to postpone punishment over his abusive treatment of his former spouse. That's a stark enough comparison on its own, but consider this: The GOP leadership should have already forced Henson's resignation, but instead, they are reinforcing his bad behavior by "needing him" to not only show up, but to do so on days when his victim was counting on justice to give her some peace of mind. Peace of mind that may not be forthcoming:

Tuesday Twitter roundup

Here we go again:

But it's not in the Veto garage, it's in the Veto driveway. Just leaving it on the Agenda until enough Dems go to the bathroom? You can tell Phil Berger is about to blow his top:

Public mood is trending more Liberal in the wake of Trumpism

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For all you "too far left" naysayers, chew on this:

Democrats worry that they’ll nominate a presidential candidate who’s too liberal to win a general election, but liberal policies are what the majority of Americans want now. That’s the intriguing finding of an analysis by UNC professor emeritus James Stimson, a leading figure in American public opinion research.

In announcing his most recent analysis, Stimson wrote: “The annual estimate for 2018 is the most liberal ever recorded in the 67-year history of Mood, just slightly higher than the previous high point of 1961.”

I'm sure many of the Old Guard (Rob C) would/will tell us this is a predictable swing based on who is in the White House, and that is surely a contributing factor. But I believe it's also a trend that will continue, as Millennials get more politically active and Gen Z hit the voting age. That's why it's critical we focus our GOTV efforts at those younger folks, who are much less prone to fall for the Right's constantly re-hashed "tax cuts spur job creation!" and "government regulation is bad!" mantras. Here's more on the Presidential effect:

Coal Ash Wednesday: Trump's EPA bows to industry pressure

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Nixing rule requiring power plants to show financial capability to clean up spills:

The Trump administration said Tuesday that it won't require electric utilities to show they have money to clean up hazardous spills from power plants despite a history of toxic coal ash releases contaminating rivers and aquifers. Environmental Protection Agency officials said Tuesday that modern industry practices and recently enacted regulations are sufficient to shield taxpayers from potential cleanup costs.

The finding comes after the EPA last year reversed a related proposal under President Barack Obama that would have imposed new financial requirements on the hardrock mining industry.

On paper anyway, the difference between "taxpayers" and "ratepayers" is substantial. But in reality, there really isn't much difference. All taxpayers also pay power bills, and when the NCUC bows to Duke Energy demands to raise their rates to pay for spills and safe disposal of coal ash, taxpayers are footing the bill. And this is not an academic exercise:

Tuesday Twitter roundup

The big day is Friday:

I am running for local office again this year, and I challenge each and every one of you to take a look at the people who are running for your town/city council and boards of aldermen. Some of these folks would do a fantastic job, but some of the others have no business even running. Pay attention, and make sure to vote. Don't let 10% choose who will run your town, or you will probably regret it.

NC GOP has put DHHS in the crosshairs

And Secretary Mandy Cohen has had quite enough:

Cohen has spent a lot of time at the legislative building in Raleigh this week, working the halls and talking to budget writers about her qualms with the budget. She’s also been making media appearances to reiterate her priorities and concerns.

Cohen also sharply criticized the legislature for cutting out $42 million in recurring administrative funds over the coming two years. Additionally, she said that as the budget stands right now, the Medicaid budget is $63 million short. “It’s dramatic. It’s irresponsible,” she said. “It’s not like we’re trying to manage some really trying times. No one has given me an answer in this building about why are we doing this cut? We’re not in a recession. Why are they doing it this year… other than to play games?” Cohen said.

There are a couple of obvious reasons, and they both have to do with Medicaid Expansion. Cohen has been pushing them hard for it, and has the data to back up her arguments. That makes her the "enemy" in the eyes of irresponsible and capricious Republicans, so whatever levers they can pull to exert pressure on her are being pulled with a vengeance. But there's also something else: Using the excuse of a procedure change (switching to managed care), they're cutting her staff, which will make it much more difficult to handle Medicaid Expansion if it did get approved. And that will become one more reason for them to not approve it. Create a crisis, and then lament said crisis. Standard operating procedure. Dr. Cohen also has a completely unnecessary and disruptive move looming:

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