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Report finds long-term Investment in rural areas improves resources

A new report highlights the impact of investing $100 million in rural North Carolina through the Healthy Places initiative, improving access to health, food, and recreation resources over a decade. Adam Linker of the Reynolds trust emphasizes the importance of community-driven efforts, noting significant improvements and active engagement with local leaders to enhance services like snow removal in underserved areas.

NC Senate Republicans advance bill forcing law enforcement cooperation with ICE

Republicans on the North Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee have advanced a bill mandating that sheriffs cooperate with ICE by honoring detainer requests to hold suspects believed to be in the country illegally. Critics, including immigrant rights advocate Veronica Aguilar, argue that the bill will undermine community trust in law enforcement and expose local authorities to potential lawsuits.

House bill would create a new state Department of Housing and Community Development

House Bill 925, introduced by Rep. Diamond Staton-Williams, seeks to establish a North Carolina Department of Housing and Community Development aimed at enhancing economic potential and housing accessibility for low- to moderate-income residents. The bill outlines the creation of various divisions within the department and proposes a $30 million annual budget to support its initiatives.

NC doesn’t pay dentists enough to treat Medicaid beneficiaries, new report says

The report by the Oral Health Transformation Task Force, under the NC Institute of Medicine, emphasizes the integration of oral health with general health, particularly for Medicaid beneficiaries and low-income individuals. State Medicaid director Jay Ludlam highlights the critical importance of dental health and its broad impacts, including better job prospects and overall physical health.

Little Rock A.M.E. Zion Church Is Tackling Charlotte’s Housing Crisis

Little Rock A.M.E. Zion Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, is addressing the city’s affordable housing shortage by launching Varick on 7th, a mixed-use apartment complex developed in collaboration with the city and Laurel Street Residential. This initiative not only provides essential housing options but also sets a precedent for community-church partnerships to tackle major social issues.

NC Gov. Cooper presents his budget as the legislative “short session” begins

Governor Roy Cooper’s recent budget proposal emphasizes strengthening public education in North Carolina, featuring an average 8.5% raise for teachers and the restoration of master’s pay, amidst rising teacher turnover. In contrast to expanding Republican-backed private school vouchers, Cooper’s budget aims to refocus on public schooling by freezing voucher funding and increasing support for child care and preschool initiatives.

NC meets goal for zero-emissions vehicle registrations, falls short on energy usage in buildings

In an analysis of North Carolina’s state energy spending, NC Newsline reports that the state incurs a $960,000 daily energy bill across its 4,400 buildings. With Governor Roy Cooper’s term nearing its end, the focus intensifies on the state’s progress towards ambitious climate targets set by his administration, including significantly increasing zero-emission vehicles and reducing per-square-foot energy consumption in state-owned buildings.

Duke Energy feeling the heat as public hearings continue this week on carbon plan

Duke Energy’s proposed carbon plan in North Carolina, as discussed in Lisa Sorg’s report for NC Newsline on April 23, 2024, faces scrutiny for potentially delaying necessary greenhouse gas reductions and imposing higher energy costs on low-income families. Amid record high atmospheric CO2 levels, the plan hinges on natural gas expansion and postpones coal plant retirements, with public hearings and written comments currently being solicited before the plan can proceed.

New poll shows AG Josh Stein widening gap over Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson in NC’s governor’s race

With the gubernatorial election just months away, the latest Meredith College poll reveals Democrat Josh Stein widening his lead over Republican Mark Robinson in North Carolina. Stein’s increasing support among unaffiliated voters and moderates, coupled with concerns over Robinson’s past statements and actions, suggests a shifting political landscape ahead of Election Day.