Carolina Journal Weekly Report

February 01, 2013

Carolina Journal Weekly Report
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For the week of February 01, 2013 -

Reaction of the Week

RALEIGH — North Carolina’s aggressive approach to occupational licensing raises prices and protects current members of a profession more than it protects consumers. That’s a key finding in a new John Locke Foundation Spotlight report, which compares occupational licensing to outdated “medieval guilds.”

The report recommends six ways to “de-guild” North Carolina’s economy. Those recommendations include cutting the number of licensing boards and licensed job categories.

“Consumers would benefit from lower costs, more competition, a wider range of service levels, and more reliance on private review and certification processes,” said report author Jon Sanders, JLF Director of Regulatory Studies. “Aspiring members of a profession would be able to enter it easily, potentially bringing new ideas that would transform the industry or helping contribute to a larger menu of service choices for consumers.”

“Society would benefit from more human and entrepreneurial liberty, as well as from greater employment access for the poor, the less educated, and older career changers,” added Sanders, whose study of occupational licensing marks the latest installment in his series of Carolina Cronyism reports.

North Carolina features more than 50 occupational licensing boards, Sanders said. “The state licenses more occupations than most other states,” he said. “A recent report ranked North Carolina in a tie with Massachusetts at No. 15 in the nation for most licensed job categories at 154. Among neighboring states, only Tennessee licenses more. Virginia licenses half as many jobs as North Carolina, and crossing the border from North to South Carolina reduces licensed occupations by two-thirds.”

News Features

CJ: New study skews data on N.C. tax burdens
RALEIGH — There’s no reason to believe a new report’s claim that North Carolina’s tax system takes a “much larger share” from middle- and low-income families than from families with higher incomes. The John Locke Foundation documents how the misuse of selected federal tax data leads left-leaning analysts to the wrong conclusions.

CJ: Thousands receive N.C. Revenue notices that look like bills
RALEIGH — A stint as a prosecutor in a South Carolina county ended up earning Eric Rowell a notice of failure to file a North Carolina income tax return for 2008. Rowell neither lived nor worked in North Carolina that year. But that didn’t keep the N.C. Department of Revenue from sending him an automated notice of intent to assess taxes for that year.

CJ: Long session of General Assembly gets rolling
RALEIGH — Gavels in both the House and the Senate fell at noon Wednesday as the General Assembly begins its 2013 session in earnest. Gone is the ceremonial first day, when lawmakers trekked to the state capital three weeks early to elect their leadership and take care of perfunctory ceremonial duties.

CJ: Audit: N.C. Medicaid in disarray, wastes millions
RALEIGH — North Carolina’s Medicaid program is in a major state of disarray, costing taxpayers “hundreds of millions of dollars” in mismanagement, a blistering state audit revealed. The Medicaid program deliberately violates General Assembly directives and potentially state statutes, the audit said.

CJ: Freshman Lawmaker proposes letting school districts go all-charter
RALEIGH — While the Republican leadership is talking education reform — including offering more choices for parents and students — a freshman GOP representative is putting forth a new twist on charter schools. Rep. Donny Lambeth, R-Forsyth, would like to give entire school districts the option of converting to charter school districts.

Upcoming Events

Monday, February 04, 2013 at 12:00 p.m.
Shaftesbury Society Luncheon
with our special guest Dr. Walter Wessels
"Right-To-Work: What Does The Law Do?"

Saturday, February 16, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
JLF 23rd Anniversary Gala Event
with our special guest Stuart Varney
JLF 23rd Anniversary Event with Fox Business News Anchor Stuart Varney

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

Capital Quotes

If you want to take gender studies that’s fine, go to a private school and take it.
— Gov. Pat McCrory, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer,  talking on Bill Bennett’s radio show.

The University’s value to North Carolina should not be measured by jobs filled alone.
— UNC President Tom Ross, as reported by the Raleigh News & Observer, responding in a statement to McCrory’s comments.

We all know we are going to be dictated to by the federal government, so if they want to do it, just let them do it.
— Sen. Tom Apodaca, R-Henderson, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer, talking about a bill he co-sponsored that would make the federal government solely responsible for running the health exchanges mandated by the Affordable Care Act in the state.

I’m offended a bill of this import, that hurts the unemployed of North Carolina as severely as it does; I’m offended that it’s rushed through on the second day of the session.
— Rep. Paul Luebke, D-Durham, as quoted by the Raleigh News & Observer, commenting about a bill to reform the state’s unemployment insurance program.

On The Air This Week…

Carolina Journal Radio

This week on C J Radio…
JLF’s Terry Stoops discusses virtual charter school expansion; HHS Secretary Aldona Wos comments on top challenges for the agency; Sen. Phil Berger discusses a state-run health exchange & Medicaid expansion; Duke University professor Ruth Grant on unintended consequences of incentives; and JLF’s Roy Cordato offers the latest climate change news.

NC Spin

This week on NC Spin…
Join moderator Tom Campbell for for another week of political discussion and debate on the most intelligent television talk show in the state. Topics this week: The legislature returns; education silos; political party examination; and corruption and fraud. This week’s panelists: John Hood and Becki Gray from the John Locke Foundation; Chris Fitzsimon of NC Policy Watch; and former House Speaker Joe Mavretic.


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