Carolina Journal Weekly Report

August 28, 2009

Carolina Journal Weekly Report

For the week of August 28, 2009 -

Reaction of the Week

RALEIGH — North Carolina would feel no more pressure to build commercial wind turbines along its mountain ridgelines if lawmakers scrapped their two-year-old renewable energy mandates. That’s the assessment a John Locke Foundation expert makes in a new Spotlight report.

The report urges repeal of both the energy mandates and a state Ridge Law that limits mountain construction. “Some opponents of massive wind turbines have relied on the Ridge Law to block construction of those turbines in the North Carolina mountains,” said report author Daren Bakst, JLF Legal and Regulatory Policy Analyst. “But that Ridge Law violates the rights of individuals to use their property.”

“The real problem is renewable energy mandates lawmakers adopted in 2007 in Senate Bill 3,” Bakst added. “Get rid of those energy mandates, and you won’t see any commercial wind turbines along the mountain ridgelines.”

Wind power advocates have been pushing for commercial wind turbines in the mountains, Bakst said. “These are turbines as tall as 500 feet, the height of 50-story skyscrapers,” he said. “The mountains and the coast are the only locations where wind power is viable in North Carolina.”

Advocates have run into problems with mountain wind turbines because of the 1983 Ridge Law, officially known as the Mountain Ridge Protection Act.

News Features

CJ: Government jobs won’t help shake employment
RALEIGH — North Carolina’s continuing struggles with unemployment should remind policymakers that the state’s economy cannot rely on job growth in the government sector. That’s one lesson the John Locke Foundation’s chief budget analyst takes away from the state’s latest employment news.

CJ: N.C. eager to jump aboard high-speed rail
RALEIGH — President Barack Obama’s plans to transform fundamentally the way Americans travel is gaining speed, and North Carolina wants to go along for the ride. The president announced in April a plan to provide $1 billion a year for the next five years, in addition to the $8 billion in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, as a down payment on a nationwide network of high-speed rail lines.

CJ:For-profit colleges finding their model a hard sell
RALEIGH — Operators of for-profits say they provide access to education to students who are not being served by traditional higher-ed institutions.

Patrol pressed over records
RALEIGH — Gov. Beverly Perdue said Tuesday that she was “deeply disappointed” that state Highway Patrol records involving her predecessor’s travel and events can’t be found, but she declined to make public an internal investigation into the missing records. Patrol officials say the internal affairs investigation, the second of two internal probes into the missing records, cleared a patrol supervisor involved in the records’ disappearance.

Efficiency panel breaks down state budget
RALEIGH — Gov. Beverly Perdue’s panel to find ways to root out wasteful spending and reorganize state government met for the first time Tuesday, five months after members were appointed and two weeks after lawmakers passed a $19 billion budget. The committee fulfills a campaign vow for Perdue, but it lacks the same inherent authority to force change as its predecessors.

Upcoming Events

Monday, August 31, 2009 at 12:00 PM, Noon
A meeting of the Shaftesbury Society
with our special guest John Hood
Keep Your Eye On The Ball: Leadership Lessons from the Fourth Crusade

Tuesday, September 01, 2009 at 7 p.m.
A CJ Expansion Project Briefing
with John Hood
Carolina Journal Expansion

Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 6:30 pm
Triangle Freedom Club Meeting
with our special guest Terry Stoops
Can You Find Out What You Want To Know About Your Child's School? Transparency and the North Carolina K-12 Education System

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

Capital Quotes

You don’t need government to stimulate competition. It has never stimulated competition. What you need to do is unleash the marketplace that you’ve go.
— Sen. Richard Burr, R-NC, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer, talking about health care reform.

There is a vacuum.
Gary Pearce, a Democratic strategist in Raleigh, describing to the Raleigh News & Observer the field of Democrats that have so far have expressed interest in challenging Sen. Richard Burr next year.

If we’re excluding one North Carolina student from the university in place of an out-of-state student, we are doing wrong.
— Rep. George Cleveland, R-Onslow, commenting to the Raleigh News & Observer on a provision that allows university booster clubs to pay the in-state tuition rate for out-of-state students. Students receiving these scholarships also count as “in-state” for the 18 percent cap on out-of-state students at all UNC system schools except for the School of the Arts.

I believe that the salary was excessive.
— State Auditor Beth Wood, as quoted by the Associated Press, on the salary N.C. State University paid Mary Easley.

On The Air This Week…

Carolina Journal Radio

This week on C J Radio…
JLF’s Becki Gray reviews the legislative session; N.C. A&T University professor Jennis Biser discusses Milton Friedman’s role in development of public choice theory; Gov. Beverly Perdue explains her budget choices; NC GOP chairman Tom Fetzer discusses preparations for the next election battle; and JLF’s Terry Stoops reviews the new K-12 education budget. 

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: Corruption cases capturing attention; the 2010 elections and why Republicans are so excited; and the health care call-in show on UNC TV. This week’s panelists: John Hood, president of the John Locke Foundation; Chris Fitzsimon of NC Policy Watch; Henry Hinton, host of Eastern North Carolina’s “Talk of the Town”; and Cash Michaels, columnist for The Carolinian.

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


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