Carolina Journal Weekly Report

April 13, 2012

Carolina Journal Weekly Report
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For the week of April 13, 2012 -

Reaction of the Week

RALEIGH — North Carolina’s courts have ruled it is legal for local governments to use taxpayer resources to lobby the General Assembly on legislation, and that’s exactly what nearly two dozen cities and counties are registered to do as the May 16 legislative short session nears.

As of March 28, eight North Carolina counties and 10 municipalities were listed as principals in the North Carolina General Assembly Lobbying Directory, reports Carolina Journal. The local governments are sprinkled among more than 660 lobbyists and 700 principals registered to lobby on behalf of businesses, industries, and advocates for and against specific causes and issues.

The legality of local government lobbying is addressed in an April 2011 “N.C. Local Government Law Blog” by UNC School of Government Professor of Public Law and Government Robert Joyce. He reviews three cases — North Carolina ex rel Horne v. Chafin, Bardolph v. Arnold, and Dollar v. Cary. Joyce concludes:

“So, it appears, local governments may use public funds to try to influence the General Assembly in a particular direction and to put out informational materials regarding issues. They may not, however, use public funds to try to influence the outcome of an election — either an election for office or a referendum on a public issue.”

While the legality of local government lobbying is settled, the question of whether the practice is appropriate isn’t.

News Features

CJ: Another Commerce official involved In sustainability nonprofit
RALEIGH — A subordinate of N.C. Commerce Department official Henry C. McKoy was serving as president of a nonprofit organization when, acting in her official capacity as a state employee, she applied for and received a $150,000 grant for the nonprofit from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.

CJ: GOP superintendent candidate would put himself out of a job
RALEIGH — If Richard Alexander gets his way, he’ll be North Carolina’s next superintendent of public instruction. He’ll also be the last. That’s because Alexander, a special-education teacher from Monroe, wants to convert the elected post of state schools superintendent into an appointed position.

CJ: Three GOP contenders vie for House District 6
RALEIGH — A Tea Party pioneer, a libertarian-leaning Iraqi war veteran, and a former Democratic state lawmaker are pitching themselves as the best conservative choice and voice for House District 6 in the May 8 Republican primary.

CJ: WakeMed, Rex spar over level of charity care
RALEIGH — No matter how you calculate it, WakeMed Health and Hospitals is doing the lion’s share of charity care in Wake County. The private, not-for-profit hospital system complains its quasi-governmental competitor Rex Hospital should do more to ease the burden.

Chances of GOP presidential fight fades
RALEIGH — Rick Santorum’s departure from the Republican presidential race means less should be at stake for the GOP nomination when North Carolin  voters participate in the state’s May 8 primary. Former Massachusett  Gov. Mitt Romney appears well on his way to claiming the party’s presidential nomination after Santorum suspended his campaign Tuesday.

Upcoming Events

Monday, April 16, 2012 at 12:00 PM, Noon
A meeting of the Shaftesbury Society
with our special guest Patrick J. Michaels
Public Choice and Public Science: Global Warming and the Government-Scientific Complex

Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at 6:45pm
A special celebration of NC Spin's 700th show
with special guest Bob Schieffer
NC SPIN 700th Show Celebration featuring CBS' Bob Schieffer

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

Capital Quotes

He went too far, too fast. He forgot about North Carolina.
Gary Pearce, a Democratic consultant who worked on John Edwards’ 1998 Senate campaign, talking to the Washington Post about Edwards.

Somebody said, ‘Why do you do what you do?’ It’s the psychic income – believing you can make a difference. It’s that road.
— Lt. Governor Walter Dalton, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer, on why he’s seeking the Democratic nomination for governor and is in politics in general.

That’s why I am running for governor… If we don’t recommit ourselves, we may find ourselves looking up at Mississippi and Alabama, and I’m not for that.
— Former Congressman Bob Etheridge, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer, talking about the importance of education in his decision to run for governor.

I think when you put the three of us side by side in a debate, I believe you’ll come to the conclusion that the person best able to win for the Democrats is me.
— Rep. Bill Faison, D-Orange, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer, stating why he believes he’s the best Democrat running for governor this year.

On The Air This Week…

Carolina Journal Radio

This week on C J Radio…
JLF’s John Hood analyzes the Supreme Court’s oral arguments over Obamacare; Harvard professor Meghan O’Sullivan discusses the Middle East turmoil’s impact on the U.S.; House Speaker Thom Tillis and Reps. Marilyn Avila and G.L. Pridgen discuss a task force looking into unemployment insurance fraud; Doug Bandow of the Cato Institute outlines safeguards to ensure the feds aren’t abusing power related to targeted killings of suspected U.S. terrorists; JLF’s Jon Sanders on the anti-energy coalition.

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: Problems in worker’s comp; handicapping the governor and lieutenant governor races; poor grades for public schools; and annexation. This week’s panelists: John Hood, president of the John Locke Foundation; Chris Fitzsimon of NC Policy Watch; former legislator Gene Arnold; and former Attorney General and Secretary of State Rufus Edminsten.


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