Albemarle Region Now


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State Auditor Beth Wood has chided the Department of Health and Human Services for dragging its feet in gaining federal certification for its NCTracks Medicaid information system, an omission that could cost the state $9.6 million a year.
Late last week, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) voted in favor of a bill preventing President Barack Obama from bypassing Congress to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants.
This is a serious subject. It is drawing some good early response. It is not the kind of subject you can write a definite final "thus saith the Lord" treatise on. I would like to be the leader of discussion rather than some arbitrator.
If you didn't listen to the Prez's speeches, you wouldn't know what it means to be a good American.
About 2,400 children taking part in the state's fledgling Opportunity Scholarships program know they will receive money to help pay tuition, letting them attend private schools this fall.
The U. S. Supreme Court voted 5 to 4 in the Hobby Lobby religious freedom case to support this retail company's first amendment right to hold certain religious and ethical beliefs over the will of the federal government's police power directed by a poorly written, and inconsistently enforced law.
Today, Saturday, August 02, 2014, the House passed a $21.25 billion state budget. The Senate passed the same bipartisan state budget on Friday, August 01, 2014.
A recent blog post published by a liberal organization outlines the experiences of two students who sought to acquire free state-issued voter photo IDs from the NC DMV.
My good friend and mentor, Wayne Martin, sent this to me. I send it to you as just one more example of the way terms like "liberal" and "conservative" are thrown around these days.
I have been discussing teacher pay rankings for years. In fact, three years ago I wrote a newsletter piece titled, Education spending in North Carolina: The ranking problem. In that piece, I outlined the major problems associated with the National Education Association (NEA) rankings of teacher...
Soon, the North Carolina General Assembly will vote on a history-making budget agreement which provides the largest teacher pay raise in North Carolina history and creates the North Carolina Education Endowment.
Senate and House leaders on Tuesday rolled out specifics in their $21.3 billion General Fund budget, including an average 7 percent pay increase for teachers that would not eliminate teacher assistant jobs.
The State Board of Elections today set a special filing period for three judicial seats vacated by Chief Judge John Martin of the Court of Appeals, Superior Court Judge William Constangy (Mecklenburg), and Superior Court Judge Robert Johnson (Alamance).

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Government

Publisher's note: The author of this post is Barry Smith, who is an associate editor for the Carolina Journal, John Hood Publisher.

Berger and Tillis also allowed to intervene in lawsuit
RALEIGH About 2,400 children taking part in the state's fledgling Opportunity Scholarships program know they will receive money to help pay tuition, letting them attend private schools this fall.

On Wednesday, Superior Court Judge Robert Hobgood denied an effort by plaintiffs in the case to prohibit distribution of the Opportunity Scholarships before he rules on a motion for summary judgment in the case.

"The money is going to go out around Aug. 15," said Renee Flaherty, an attorney for the Arlington, Va.-based Institute for Justice, which is helping parents of the students seeking the vouchers. "All the kids [who] were awarded scholarships for this year are going to get their scholarships and at... (read more)
Publisher's note: The author of this post is Barry Smith, who is an associate editor for the Carolina Journal, John Hood Publisher.

$21.3 billion General Fund plan also raises salaries for state employees
RALEIGH Senate and House leaders on Tuesday rolled out specifics in their $21.3 billion General Fund budget, including an average 7 percent pay increase for teachers that would not eliminate teacher assistant jobs. It also provides $1,000 pay increases, plus benefits, for state employees. Most state employees also will receive five bonus vacation days.

Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, said the budget was the culmination of three years of work following the 2010 elections, when Republicans took over the General Assembly and put the "state back on solid financial footing."

"Responsible budgeting decisions and pro-growth economic policies have also enabled legisl... (read more)

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Op-Ed & Politics

Publisher's note: The author of this post is Barry Smith, who an associate editor for the Carolina Journal, John Hood Publisher.

Failure to get federal certification could cost state $9.6 million
RALEIGH — State Auditor Beth Wood has chided the Department of Health and Human Services for dragging its feet in gaining federal certification for its NCTracks Medicaid information system, an omission that could cost the state $9.6 million a year.

"What we're pointing out to the General Assembly is that they missed their first deadline," Wood said Thursday. The original deadline was July 1, one year after the system went operational July 1, 2013.

Now, the department says it's aiming f... (read more)
News Release:

WASHINGTON, D.C. Late last week, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) voted in favor of a bill preventing President Barack Obama from bypassing Congress to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. Specifically, H.R. 5272 would prohibit any federal resources from being used to consider new or previously denied applications under the president's deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA) program – a program which he issued under executive order in 2012 without congressional approval. Furthermore, the bill prohibits the authorization of deferred action for any other class of illegal immigrants.

"President Obama has all but invited the flood of illegal immigrants across o... (read more)
This is a serious subject. It is drawing some good early response. It is not the kind of subject you can write a definite final "thus saith the Lord" treatise on. I would like to be the leader of discussion rather than some arbitrator.

I am formulating my own opinions as I study more closely what the Bible says. If a woman with a small child in her cart was packing heat at Wal Mart, many more will be soon following. I'm not into disarming pissed-off women at Wal Mart. I might feel the need to carry, myself for sure!

Have you ever been in a situation where a gun would have been helpful?

Yes I have!!! I was a nurse's aide on the Alcoholic Ward at Dorothea Dix in 1967. It was a l... (read more)

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Community

On Saturday, May 24, 2014 the Washington Police Department arrested Rodney Darnell Putney, age 25, of Washington Street Washington.
On Saturday, May 17, 2014 the Washington Police Department assisted by Greenville Police, NC SBI, and Pitt County Sheriff's Office arrested Tyreef Shaquan Jennette, age 19, of Mont Clair Drive Washington on the 1000 block of Carolina Avenue.
Governor Pat McCrory signed an executive order today that creates a multi-agency task force aimed at reducing substance abuse and underage drinking. The Governor's Substance Abuse and Underage Drinking Prevention and Treatment Task Force will build on statewide prevention, treatment and...
Alexander Edward Thalmann, 22, of Washington, died March 31, 2014 at Vidant Medical Center.
I am not a veteran. I only have the greatest respect for those who have served, unsurpassed by all professions that keep America safe and strong.
Facts can be inconvenient things. Especially when your own in-house records contradict the spin you are peddling to the public.
A Moore County man who was on probation for domestic violence charges is accused of killing his live-in girlfriend, whose body was found Wednesday near the entrance to the county landfill, authorities said.

Business

Press Release:

Move Will Add 1,262 New Jobs
Charlotte, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory and North Carolina Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced today that Sealed Air Corporation will establish its new global headquarters in Mecklenburg County. The company plans to create 1,262 jobs in Charlotte by the end of 2017.

"North Carolina's business-friendly climate continues to attract corporate headquarters to the Charlotte region," said Governor McCrory. "We welcome Sealed Air's senior executive team, division and line managers and staff to the Queen City where they will find big city opportunity with a great quality of life."

Sealed Air is a Fortune 500 company that generated revenue of approximately $7.7 billion in 2013. The company creates packaging and hygiene solutions for name brands such as Cryovac® food packaging solutions, Bubble Wrap® brand cushioning and Di... (read more)

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The Region

Press Release:
Many companies give preference to job applicants who have some forklift training and industrial safety training. To meet this need, the Division of Continuing Education will offer a one-day class in forklift operations and a four-day class in industrial safety.

The forklift class will be 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 9. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration, or OSHA, 10 training will be 5:30 to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, Aug. 11-15. Both classes will be held at the Beaufort County Skills Center on Page Road east of Washington.

Instructor Ron Skinner will give students an overview of forklift operations, inspections and safe use of a forklift truck. Students will learn to inspect the truck and determine lift limitations. The course will also include instruction on determining the center of gravity and how that determines the proper lift of a load. T... (read more)

The Arts

For Immediate Release:

Performances of Simon Peter, Fisher of Men will be held July 15 through August 9, 2014 at the Rocky Hock Playhouse located at the Leon Nixon Catering & Banquet Facilities on Hwy. 32 in Edenton, NC. Ticket prices in Edenton include both the performance and an all-you-can-eat buffet. For more information contact the Rocky Hock Playhouse Box Office: (252) 482-4621.

Dinner theatre ticket prices are as follows:

The Rocky Hock Playhouse is a full time professional theatre operated by the Emmerich Theatre Production Company, Inc., of Minnesota.

STORY:

The Rocky Hock Playhouse is presenting their 2014 summer musical Simon Peter, Fisher of Men by Gloria Emmerich. The Playhouse has a long history in the area and has operated continuously since the doors opened in August of 2000. Their summer musical focuses on the life of the Apostle Peter and his relationshi... (read more)

Satirical Farce Emblematic of the Wes Anderson Franchise

Wes Anderson's films are an eclectic hodgepodge of reserved goodness; some sweeter than others, but all resilient as tested by time, and a perfect evening in the present. I know. We rented The Grand Budapest Hotel as soon as we could get a copy of the DVD, and we were pleasantly entertained, which is almost always the case with his films on the first viewing, and always on the second. Upon this first sitting, we were struck by this fine film's rich representation of Wes Anderson's unique storytelling, yet look forward to it, once again, the 'second time around'.

Is "The Grand Budapest Hotel" truly emblematic of all Wes Anderson films?

Yes and no.

Yes, because the film is deliberately, and now ironically staged in the center of each frame of film. One can argue that this perfect placement, as if modeling a fine garment... (read more)

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Living

News Release:

This survey is being conducted to learn about the health and quality of life in Beaufort County. The results will be used to help address the major health and community issues in Beaufort County.

Each person may take the survey once, must be atleast 16 years old, and a resident of Beaufort County. Survey responses will remain confidential. The survey should take approximately 15 minutes to complete.

Please click on the following link to participate: http://tinyurl.com/BCCHA2014[from-answers-to-action_employee_survey_customer_survey_199x90[1]]

Kelli Russell, MPH, RHEd

Preparedness Coordinator • Human Services Planner III
Beaufort County Health Department

Office: (252) 940-6528 • Cell: (252) 402-5467 • kelli.russell@bchd.net... (read more)


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