Carolina Journal Weekly Report

August 14, 2009

Carolina Journal Weekly Report

For the week of August 14, 2009 -

Reaction of the Week

RALEIGH — North Carolina’s government mandates for renewable energy and energy efficiency will likely cost the state 3,600 jobs and $1.8 billion in higher electricity rates, while slashing the state’s economy by more than $140 million a year by 2021. That’s according to a new report from a Boston-based economic research team.

Losses could be four times as high if the state scraps caps designed to limit the impact on consumers, according to Beacon Hill Institute researchers.

“This new Beacon Hill Institute report spells out in stark detail the kind of negative impact we’ve predicted ever since the General Assembly first started discussing the energy mandates spelled out in Senate Bill 3,” said Daren Bakst, John Locke Foundation Legal and Regulatory Policy Analyst. “Supporters pushed this legislation as a tool to fight the uncertain impacts of global climate change. Some supporters even claim S.B. 3 will create jobs for North Carolina. Now we see with much more certainty that this tool is set to inflict plenty of damage on its own, including thousands of job losses.”

Approved in 2007, S.B. 3 establishes North Carolina’s Renewable and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard. It requires the state's electric utility companies to generate a percentage of electricity from new renewable resources such as solar, wind, and biomass. It also requires new energy-efficiency measures.

Together, renewable sources and increased efficiency would account for 3 percent of North Carolina electricity generation by 2012 and 12.5 percent by 2021.

News Features

CJ: Retirees grill Price on health care overhaul
RALEIGH – There was no shouting or shoving, but residents of a ritzy retirement community in north Raleigh still had stern words yesterday for North Carolina Rep. David Price during a private question-and-answer session on President Obama’s plan to overhaul the nation’s health-care system.

CJ: Market crash pinches state pensions
RALEIGH — North Carolina has been among a handful of states to fund its pension program fully for public school teachers and state workers in recent years, but it will have to pay millions more this year and for years to come because of the recession and the downturn in financial markets.

General Assembly adjourns
RALEIGH — The General Assembly closed Tuesday after more than six months of work dominated by the recession, a tight state budget and tax increases. Lawmakers spent most of their energy balancing service cuts against tax increases in one of the worst recessions in generations. The tough economic times didn’t stop lawmakers from banning cigarette smoke from restaurants and bars, extending tax breaks to Apple Inc. and other businesses.

Lawmakers leave bills on next year’s to-do list
RALEIGH — For emergency room nurse Terry Shook, his home is his castle. Anyone who kicks down his door to get inside ought to expect to be carried out again in a stretcher. That’s why he has urged the General Assembly to pass legislation making state law on deadly force crystal clear with the doctrine that unlawful and forcible entry into a home allows the resident to shoot without fear of potential prosecution.

Easley’s ex in-law may lose her job
RALEIGH — The former sister-in-law of former Gov. Mike Easley could soon be out of her state job. Judy Easley, who was married to the former governor’s brother and has remained close to the Easley family, said in an interview that she has been notified by letter that her position could be cut by the end of the month. “According to the letter, it’s in response to the budget crisis,” she said.

Upcoming Events

Monday, August 17, 2009 at 12 PM, Noon
A meeting of the Shaftesbury Society
with our special guest Joshua Howard
Long, Obstinate, and Bloody: The Battle of Guilford Courthouse, March 15, 1781

Wednesday, August 19, 2009 at 11:30 a.m.
Health Care Policy Luncheon Briefing
with our special guests Consumer-Driven Health Care Experts
What Small Business Owners Need To Know About Health Care Reform How Conusmer-Driven Health Care Can Help North Carolina Business Survive

Thursday, August 20, 2009 at 11:30 am
Health Care Policy Luncheon Briefing
with our special guests Consumer-Driven Health Care Experts
What All Business Owners Need To Know: Why Consumer-Driven Health Care Is the Only Way to Reform U.S. Health Care

Monday, August 24, 2009 at August 24-August 28
Appalachian Institution Retreat
with our special guest Dr. Michael Zuckert
"What the Founders Thought"

Tuesday, August 25, 2009 at 11:30 a.m.
Health Care Policy Luncheon Briefing
with our special guests Consumer-Driven Health Care Experts
What Small Business Owners Need to Know About Health Care Reform: Why Consumer-Driven Health Care Is the Only Way To Reform the U.S. Health Care System

Thursday, August 27, 2009 at 11:30 a.m.
Health Care Policy Luncheon Briefing
with our special guests Consumer-Driven Health Care Experts
What Small Business Owners Need to know about Health Care Reform: Why Consumer-Driven Health Care is the Only Way to Reform the U.S. Health Care System

John Locke Foundation Carolina Journal Online
The Locker Room Carolina Journal Radio

Capital Quotes

We can’t just make mandates on small businesses who are already struggling in our economy.
— Rep. Heath Shuler, D-11th, as quoted by the Asheville Citizen-Times, commenting during a telephone town hall meeting about health care reform.

There’s no way you can have a conversation about pay raises, although any state employee, teacher and educator I know deserves it.
— Gov. Bev Perdue, as quoted by WRAL-TV, on state employee compensation.

People had to have their finger in the DMV pie.
Wayne Hurder, former Division of Motor Vehicles deputy commissioner, describing to WRAL-TV the political pressure to hire people at DMV. Those making hiring recommendations to Hurder included Senate Majority Leader Tony Rand, then-Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue, former Sen. John Kerr and Ruffin Poole, then-Gov. Mike Easley’s former legal counsel.

Timing is everything.
— Wake County commissioner Lindy Brown, commenting to the Raleigh News & Observer on when local officials will seek voter approval for an addition Triangle-wide half-cent sales tax for transit. Because of the weak economy, Brown suggests the vote may come as late as November 2011.

On The Air This Week…

Carolina Journal Radio

This week on C J Radio…
JLF’s Becki Gray offers state budget highlights, lowlights, and missed opportunities; Bob Hall of Democracy North Carolina and Carolina Journal’s Don Carrington react to questions about Easley campaign finances; JLF’s Joe Coletti reacts to Sen. Kay Hagan’s health care priorities; Sen. Richard Burr explains his version of health care reform; and JLF’s Daren Bakst discusses the negative consequences of the state's renewable energy mandates. 

NC Spin

This week on NC Spin…
Join moderator Tom Campbell for another week of political discussion and debate on the most intelligent television talk show in the state. Topics this week: The end of the legislative session; school progress scores jump; the new beach insurance plan; and whether or not our state should participate in offshore drilling for oil and gas. This week’s panelists: John Hood, president of the John Locke Foundation; Chris Fitzsimon of NC Policy Watch; former representative Gene Arnold; and Ruth Sheehan, columnist for the News and Observer.

At Issue

This week on At Issue…
Watch At Issue, hosted by Kim Genardo, Sunday at 9:00 a.m. Also available on the web at


© 2009 John Locke Foundation | 200 West Morgan St., Raleigh, NC 27601, (919) 828-3876



Material published here may be reprinted provided the
Locke Foundation receives prior notice and appropriate credit is given.


JLF Network Websites & Blogs