3 Important Things
- School’s back! CMS students started class on Monday, as did students at most of North Carolina’s 2,422 public schools. Enrollment is up at CMS schools, with about 2,400 more kids, and over 800 new pre-kindergartners. What’s also up is uncertainty – with no budget out of Raleigh, the district is uncertain as to whether they’ll have to lay off teacher assistants and how much faculty will be paid.
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- Capital punishment. Although North Carolina is one of 31 states with a death penalty, the state hasn’t performed an execution since 2006. The “Restoring Proper Justice Act”, passed and signed into law on August 5th, aims to change that. The law does away with the requirement that a physician be present for executions, since finding one to do so is sometimes hard because of medical ethics. Drug companies refused to supply drugs for executions because of bad PR, so the law exempts this information from public records requests. However, executions aren’t likely to pick up – they still face steep constitutional challenges as well as eroding public support after several recent well-publicized exonerations and botched executions.
- Playing the lotto. The legislature is considering ways to increase North Carolina Education Lottery revenues. Proposals include increased lottery advertising and a version of instant tickets available via the internet or smartphones. Proponents call it keeping up with the times and staying relevant. Opponents point out that if not for the tax cuts given to the wealthiest North Carolinians, legislators might not be so anxious to rely on the lottery as a source of revenue.
2 Happy Things
- OurHealth will invest $25 million over the next three years to establish a network of Health Clinics in Charlotte. It will bring over 60 jobs (mostly in healthcare) to Charlotte and recently entered a contract to provide health services to City of Charlotte employees.
- Charlotte Douglas Airport received a $11.5 million grant from the FAA to pay for a variety of projects, from repaving the runways to updating the 18-year-old master plan.
1 Random Thing
- This fall we’ll elect four people as out large representatives to Charlotte city council. Each party has four candidates on the ballot. There are only three Republicans running, so all three will appear on the ballot in the general election on November 3rd. There are twelve Democrats running, so in order to narrow it down to four to put on the ballot in November, the candidates will be selected in a primary held September 15th. The Charlotte Observer just did profiles on all twelve you can check out here.