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Civitas

CAPITOL CONNECTION

November/December 2011 • Vol. 3, no. 10

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Grand Jury Indicts Former Perdue Campaign Staff Workers BY MATT WILLOUGHBY

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n November 28, a Wake County Grand Jury indicted three former staff workers on Gov. Bev Perdue’s campaign committee for obstruction of justice and making false reports. The indictments are based on investigations by the State Board of Elections (SBOE) and the State Bureau of Investigation. Perdue’s former finance chairman, Peter Anthony Reichard, was indicted for obstruction of justice. He was accused of scheming to allow a Perdue supporter, Charles Michael Fulenwider, to donate more than the maximum legal individual contribution of $4,000. The scheme helped pay the salary of another Perdue staff member, Julia Leigh Sitton. The indictment alleges Reichard had Fulenwider funnel $32,000 to the Reichard-owned Tryon Capital Ventures, which then went to pay Sitton. The compensation was not reported to the State Board of Elections. The grand jury found Sitton, Director of the governor’s Western Residence

On November 28, a Wake County Grand Jury indicted three former staff workers on Gov. Bev Perdue’s campaign committee for obstruction of justice and making false reports. Photo: Don Carrington until August, continued the deception outside the campaign committee. While by not reporting the compensation from Sitton was paid $3,000 per month by Fulenwider to the SBOE or the camPerdue’s committee, Tryon Capital Venpaign committee. As a result, she was tures was also paying her another $2,000 indicted for making a false report and per month for a total of $32,000. obstruction of justice. The indictment A New Bern attorney who was a claims Sitton worked for 16 months partner in Perdue’s first husband’s law with the Perdue campaign without refirm was indicted for obstruction of jusvealing she was paid by a source from tice and making false reports over the

A Tale of Two Protests: The Occupy Movement and the Tea Party BY CLARK RIEMER

100 South Harrington Street Raleigh, N.C. 27603-1814 Vol. 3, No. 10

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Moore TEA Citizens gather to protest government spending and bailouts. Photo: Moore TEA Citizens

Even after the crackdown on Zuccotti Park in New York City, the Occupy Wall Street movement continues around the country and often draws comparisons with the Tea Parties. While the movements may have been born out of similar (though not identical) complaints, the two organizations are very different in their methods, organization and objections. Both the Occupy Movement and the Tea Party rallied against the bailout of big business and banks. Combined, the bailouts of the banks and automobile industry cost taxpayers over a trillion dollars to support companies that were deemed too big to fail. This struck Americans on

In This Issue 3 Debunking Voter ID Myths

4

both the left and right as fundamentally unfair. Many in both groups also questioned the role of the Federal Reserve in our economy and the tight alliance between big business and D.C. politicians. Other complaints of the two groups were more divergent. Tea Party activism was at its peak when it was in opposition to Obamacare and greater federal intervention in health care. Occupy Wall Street focused more on the burden of private debt, especially student loans and home mortgages. The Occupy movement also states they are concerned by the accumulation of wealth by the top one percent, giving rise to their famous slogan “We are the 99 percent.” Members of the Occupy group have demanded everything from a bailout for the 99 percent to the overthrow of capitalism. However, this movement can be fairly described as calling for a massive increase in government in order to redistribute wealth from the one percent to the 99 percent through taxation and welfare programs. Others have called for a “debt jubilee” that would eliminate all personal debt in the United States, or in more radical formations eliminate all

Jackpot in the Recession

payment for a campaign flight. Trawick Hamilton “Buzzy” Stubbs is accused of hiding donations to the Perdue committee that paid for $28,000 worth of flights in 2007 and 2008. Those payments were also not reported to the SBOE. The indictment alleges Stubbs reported the payments as contributions to the state Democratic Party when the flights directly benefited the Perdue campaign. By then, he had already contributed the maximum individual amount to Perdue. In addition, the grand jury indicted Stubbs for false reports to hide the payments. During an investigation by the SBOE, Stubbs claimed he tried to get Perdue’s committee attorney, John Wallace, to instruct him on how to report the flight payments. The board’s report notes Stubbs told investigators the campaign staff was more interested in raising money than how the expenses were paid. The District Attorney’s office said Stubbs should have known how to propIndictments Continued on Pg. 5

Corporate Welfare Deal Goes Bust BY NEAL INMAN

On October 6, “Project Soccer” officially fell through as Continental Tire announced its new site in Sumter, South Carolina. Squabbling between the Republican Senate leader and Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue torpedoed a major “economic incentives” deal with Continental Tire. The arrangement would have paid the major tire manufacturer over $100 million in tax incentives and transportation upgrades, including $45 million in upfront cash, if the company opened a factory in Brunswick County. While the deal, codenamed “Project Soccer,” had been rumored for months, it hit a snag after an Associated Press report disclosed that major Democratic donors stood to gain from it. Major contributors to Gov. Perdue and Democratic State Senator Michael

Occupy

Welfare Deal

Continued on Pg. 11

Continued on Pg. 5

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Unemployment: 2010-2011

7-10

Conservative Effectiveness Rankings

12

Naughty & Nice List


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CAPITOL CONNECTION

Wake School Board Elections Teach Lessons BY BOB LUEBKE

ments of the new plan, parental choice and neighborhood schools, are values championed by Republican board members. Even Kevin Hill has said he does not favor scrapping it. Republicans may have lost the ability to lead the board, but they Kevin Hill, left, won a runoff against Heather Losurdo, won the school right, as the Democrats gained majority control of the assignment battle. Wake County School Board. Liberal advocacy groups working on behalf of Two years after gaining a majority Democratic candidates far outspent on the Wake County Board of Educatheir conservative counterparts. Camtion, Republicans find themselves in paign finance reports show that groups the minority following a Democratic like Common Sense Matters spent sweep of all five school board races, $112,000 on mailers for school board including an expensive runoff election races and $82,000 alone on ads atbetween Heather Losurdo and school tacking Republican candidate Heather board member Kevin Hill. An email Losurdo. Apart from assistance from by Mack Paul, Wake County DemoCivitas Action ($13,200), Republicratic Party chairman, said the victory can candidates had no match for the “heralds the beginning of the end of money distributed by liberal advocacy the Tea Party movement.” groups like Common Sense Matters Republicans shrug off attempts to and Progress N.C. Action. Interestingascribe national significance to the loly, these are many of the same people cal results; school board elections turn who said Art Pope “bought” the 2009 on local issues and are low interest afschool board elections. fairs. Average turnout is about five to Narrow election results are a re10 percent in off year elections. Turnpudiation of the tensions and protests out for the October and November which have marked much of the last races (21 percent) was almost double two years. Nearly all polls continue 2009’s turnout (11 percent). Still, only to show strong support for parental 12 percent of eligible voters statewide choice and neighborhood schools. participated. What parents don’t want is the drama Do recent election results reprethat has accompanied board meetings. sent a rejection of the board’s decision While the school board results are to eliminate economic diversity as a disappointing for many, the last two consideration in student assignment? years show what can happen when For the past year, the board has worked concerned individuals come together to develop a plan that incorporates to take action. Conservatives who neighborhood schools, parental choice hope to replicate this success in other and also retains the strongest elements parts of the state will need to better of the current plan. Weeks before the control their message to voters, learn fall elections, a bipartisan majority of to counter the influence of liberal adthe Wake School board approved a vocacy groups and cultivate a longnew student assignment plan. term mindset among supporters. It’s hard to ignore that key ele-

2012 Dawns, Candidates Line Up BY ANDREW HENSON

With the dawn of a year that promises non-stop political drama right around the corner, candidates are already jockeying for their party’s nomination in the upcoming primary elections. 2012 will headline a Presidential election, for which Charlotte will host the Democratic National Convention; but it will not be the only show on stage. Crucial state and federal congressional elections, as well as a gubernatorial race, will also garner attention. At the U.S. Congressional level, crowded Republican races develop with the expectation that new legislative maps, a result of the decennial redistricting, will bolster Republican chances. Previous redistricting left Republicans grumbling about gerrymandering, with many pointing to 2010 as an example of previous unfairly drawn districts. In that year, Republicans won 54 percent of N.C. Congressional votes cast, but came out with only six congressional seats to the Democrats’ seven. Another redistricting consequence, Rep. Brad Miller (D – NC 13) and Rep. David Price (D – NC 4) find themselves “double-bunked” (placed in the same district) and may fight it out in a May primary race. Rep. Renee Elmers (R) and former Rep. Bob Etheridge (D), better known for his “Who Are You?” YouTube moment, seem destined for a rematch over the NC-2 district. Etheridge began raising money for this rematch within months of leaving office. Elmers unseated the former incumbent in 2010 by less than 2,000 votes. Rep. Heath Schuler (D – NC 11) and

Rep. Larry Kissell (D – NC 8), both of whom gained Republican votes in their districts through redistricting, are thought to be the more vulnerable incumbents of the congressional races. Republicans, smelling blood in the water, have packed the ballot for their party’s nomination with seven contenders lined up to fight for NC-11, and five confirmed for NC-8. Among those vying to challenge Kissell is the past District Director to former Rep. Robin Hayes, Richard Hudson. Hayes was the previous occupant of NC-8, losing re-election to Kissell in 2008. Also vulnerable, Rep. Mike McIntyre (D – NC 7) has his fair share of eager opponents. Unsuccessful 2010 GOP nominee Ilario Pantano has indicated he will again challenge McIntyre, while state Senator David Rouzer (R – Johnston) has also decided to jump in. Another crowded primary is developing for NC-13, a seat currently held by Democratic Rep. Brad Miller. Former U.S. Attorney George Holding, 2010 GOP nominee Bill Randall, and Wake County Commissioner Paul Coble have all announced their intention to run. A further element of intrigue is the possibility of Rep. Howard Coble not seeking re-election in 2012. Coble has served in the U.S. House since 1985 and is best known for opting out of the congressional pension program. With double-bunked incumbents, several vulnerable districts resulting from redistricting, and other possible congressional changeups, this coming May will be an exciting first act to a year’s worth of political jousting.

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Debunking Voter Photo ID Myths BY SUSAN MYRICK

Who are the opponents of a voter ID requirement? If we rely only on mainstream media, we would believe that all minority groups, especially African Americans and registered Democrats, oppose any legislation requiring a voter to present photo ID in order to cast a vote. Consequently it may come as a surprise to learn that all segments of North Carolina’s voting population believe that a strong voter photo ID law would prevent voter fraud. The Civitas Institute has polled the voter ID question and consistently found that the overwhelming majority of voters agree that North Carolina should institute a voter ID law. The support is strong, with approval across every demographic, including Democrats and African Americans. In fact, the opponents of voter ID are a small, but loud, alliance of Democratic leaders, ultra-liberal activists and the mainstream media. Across the country, groups like the ACLU, League of Women Voters, NAACP and AARP work together to form a powerful and well-funded coalition to stop voter ID legislation. As evidenced by these group’s talking points and the heated exchanges during the debate on voter ID in North Carolina’s 2011 legislative session, voter ID detractors rely on accusations of rac-

ism to strengthen their position, knowing that calling someone a racist is the fastest way to halt debate on any subject. Therefore it is interesting to learn that there are cracks emerging in the “thin liberal line” in the voter ID debate. The most recent example is former Alabama Congressman Artur Davis. In an October oped in the Montgomery Advisor which ran after Alabama passed a new voter ID law, Mr. Davis categorically admits that while an elected official, he was on the wrong side of the voter ID fight. He writes, “When I was a congressman, I took the path of least resistance on this subject for an African American politician. Without any evidence to back it up, I lapsed into the rhetoric of various partisans and activists who contend that requiring photo identification to vote is a suppression tactic aimed at thwarting black voter participation.” Davis does not ignore Alabama’s history and discusses the reasons that some would oppose the legislation, especially in the African American community. He describes ongoing fraudulent voting practices and decries that race is a “prohibitive indicator” of how the voters of Alabama vote. He sums up his points by saying, “The case for voter ID, however, is a

Former Alabama Congressman Artur Davis, left, and Rhode Island State Senator Harold Metts, right, have both spoken in favor of Voter Photo ID. good one, and it ought to make politics a little cleaner and the process of conducting elections much fairer. I wish I’d gotten it right the first time.” It takes real courage to stand against one’s party and contemporaries on such a polarizing issue. However, Mr. Davis is not alone. Rhode Island passed a voter ID law this year and one of the legislation’s chief backers, State Senator Harold Metts, is African American, a Democrat and a senior citizen. It is worth noting that Democrats control Rhode Island’s legislature, the governor is an Independent and the State’s Democratic Attorney General was the leader of the push for voter ID. In a joint statement with

Significant Legislation Addressed in November Session BY KAREN DUQUETTE

The North Carolina General Assembly has concluded its post-Thanksgiving session. The three-day work period included substantial legislation, with the most notable legislative activity centered on SB 9, a bill to reform the Racial Justice Act (RJA). The measure significantly reforms the RJA, signed into law by Gov. Bev Perdue in 2009, by making it consistent with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in McCleskey v. Kemp. The McCleskey case provides there must be a deliberate, conscious racial bias in the individual’s case to overturn a death penalty verdict. In its original version, RJA allowed death row inmates to appeal their sentences by using statistical evidence to try to prove racial bias, regardless of whether race was at issue in their particular trial. The House passed SB 9 in June while the Senate approved the measure along party lines November 28, where it now awaits Gov. Perdue’s likely veto. The gas tax bill, HB 645,

was also addressed during the session. North Carolina’s state gas tax changes every six months based on wholesale fuel prices and is due to increase four cents per gallon in January from 35 cents to 39 cents. The House voted 94-23 on November 29 to cap the tax at its current level until July 1, 2012. Unfortunately, the Senate chose to adjourn before taking up the measure. According to the American Petroleum Institute, North Carolina’s new gas tax rate will be the highest in the Southeast and one of the highest in the nation. Other legislation included HB 796 which allows breweries to sell their own products - even products sold by sister locations out of state. This bill easily passed both chambers and it is rumored two beer companies may seek opportunities in western North Carolina as a result. The legislature delayed taking action on Perdue’s new casino compact with the Cherokee Indians. The compact allows live

card dealers at the tribe’s casino in exchange for school districts receiving a portion of the gambling proceeds. The General Assembly would need to change the gambling laws in order to fully implement the compact and legislators could take up this measure in a later session. The House also approved HR 151 by 75-42, a resolution requesting the Democratic Party respect North Carolina’s right to work laws and use North Carolina companies for the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. The measure was largely symbolic. Finally, despite several veto overrides lingering on the calendar, neither chamber attempted to consider any of the vetoed bills. It is expected they will remain on any session calendar into next year in the likelihood legislators obtain the necessary override votes. The Senate and House are now adjourned until February 16, 2012.

the governor and Secretary of State, Senator Metts said, “While Do you agree or disagree that a person who wishes to vote should be required to show photo identification before being allowed to cast a ballot? Strongly agree Somewhat agree Somewhat disagree Strongly disagree Not sure

67% 10% 7% 14% 2%

Civitas Poll September 2011

I’m sensitive to the concerns raised, at this point I am more interested in doing the right thing and stopping voter fraud.” Though the North Carolina legislature failed in their attempt to enact voter ID legislation due to Gov. Bev Perdue’s veto pen, 2011 proved to be a good year for other states that proposed similar legislation. At least eight states either passed new laws or voted in favor of a constitutional amendment requiring a voter ID. Voters in Alabama, Rhode Island, Tennessee, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Kansas, Texas and Mississippi will now be required to present an ID in to cast a ballot. Voter photo ID supporters in North Carolina’s legislature should find inspiration in former C o n g re s s m a n Davis’ story and should push again for voter ID legislation in the 2012 short session irrespective of Gov. Perdue’s ultimate veto. In that more than 77 percent of North Carolina voters support voter photo ID, the governor’s re-election campaign will be an ideal time to revisit the voter photo ID issue.


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CAPITOL CONNECTION

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During Recession, More Try to Hit the Jackpot BY ANDREW HENSON

Throughout the recession, more North Carolinians have been looking for hope in all the wrong places—namely by participating in the state-run education lottery, one of the few legal ways to gamble in the state. Fiscal Year 2010-11 audits reveal total ticket sales topped $1.46 billion for the year, an increase in annual sales of nearly $400 million since the recession began in 2008. While North Carolina prohibits most forms of gambling in the state, with laws that in some instances denounce the practice’s “destruction of morality,” the state justified the lottery five years ago so long as a portion of the proceeds went towards education. Since 2006, annual ticket sales have increased by over $1.2 billion. Recent data show the highest per capita lottery sales in the state don’t come from North Carolina’s wealthiest counties like Wake and Mecklenburg, but rather from poor rural counties in the North-

east, with Nash, Vance and Halifax topping the list. The 10 poorest counties in North Carolina purchase, on average, 66 percent more lottery tickets per capita than the 10 wealthiest counties. Somewhat counter-intuitively, it seems the availability of lottery vendors doesn’t play a critical role in driving lottery ticket sales. Mecklenburg County has over one lottery vendor per square mile, yet has less than onethird the ticket sales per capita

of Hyde County, which only has one lottery vendor for every 356 square miles. Lotteries are now widely used revenue devices by all but a handful of states. In North Carolina, lottery proceeds are divvied up for NC PreKindergarten, public school construction, reducing class size, and financial aid college scholarships. In FY 2010-11, the state received $447 million in lottery proceeds to put towards these programs.

The lottery has also proved useful for legislators in plugging up budget deficits. In FY 2009-10, Democratic legislators rerouted lottery funds to avoid laying off teachers. And although founding legislation explicitly states that proceeds are not to supplant state government expenditures, lottery revenue is currently included as an anticipated source of income to balance the budget. The state budget is counting on over $340 million annually

Total Lottery Sales (In Billions) 2006-2011

in lottery revenue for the next two fiscal years. The decision to play the lottery is enabled by our fundamental freedom of choice, including the freedom to make a bad decision with your money. Governments, however, have long been in the business of legally prohibiting certain types of bad decisions: drugs, prostitution, etc. Gambling is another form of bad decision that North Carolina laws have denounced and prohibited, except in the case of the lottery. So long as the state government monopolizes the industry and gets a cut of the profits, this is one bad decision that North Carolina lawmakers are okay with. Indeed, 30 percent of the ticket sales goes towards education and local vendors get their cut, but the rest goes towards bureaucracy and operating costs—not to mention the lucky handful who strike it rich and provide the hope that keep people (statistically speaking, the poor) playing. Do the ends justify the means?

NC Local Governments Plan to Borrow Nearly $750M, Most Without Voter Approval BY MATT WILLOUGHBY

At a time when many people are calling for a cutback in government spending, local governments are telling North Carolina lawmakers they are making plans to borrow and spend almost threequarters of a billion dollars. A new state law requires all local governments to tell the Joint Legislative Committee on Local Government how much they intend to borrow for certain projects. The rule

applies to loans over $1 million. Between July 22 and October 6, the Committee received reports showing cities, towns and counties are looking to borrow a total of $750 million. Nearly $670 million of that amount would require no voter approval as many are revenue bonds that would be issued by a city or county. Investors would be promised proceeds from local revenue

produced by projects, such as water systems. Other debt would be installment loans through a financial institution. In those cases, some or all of the property would be used for collateral. Over $112 million – or 15 percent – of the total local debt would result from borrowing funds from the federal government. Over $40 million of the federal loans being requested would come from

the Drinking Water Revolving Fund while others would be from President Obama’s stimulus package. The interest rate on these federal government loans could be anywhere from zero percent to the market rate depending on the financial state of the local government. In some cases, the state could be required to put up 15 percent of the funds for small communities. Nearly $72 million in loans are being sought from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Such transactions merely represent one government borrowing tax dollars from another, yet those who paid the taxes may see no benefit from the projects. Just $82 million, or 11 percent, of the borrowing would come from General Obligation Bonds which have to be approved by taxpayers. However, even those numbers don’t tell the whole story because they don’t include the interest rate the localities would have to pay. A 20-year

revenue bond, for example, currently has an interest rate of nearly four percent. At that rate, a 20-year, $20 million bond will require roughly an additional $10 million in interest payments from taxpayers. Many of the local projects involve water and sewer improvements, though some projects would also fund hospitals, build housing, fund recreation facilities or acquire land for parks. The Local Government Commission in the State Treasurer’s Office will have to review and approve most of the requests. However, that is not necessarily the case for the localities seeking installment loans through financial institutions. Over $110 million of the planned borrowing would be such installment agreements. The Joint Legislative Committee on Local Government plans to review all of the borrowing proposals but does not have the power to approve or reject them.


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Indictments CONTINUED FROM PG. 1

erly report such contributions because he was a lawyer and a treasurer for political campaigns who had to file disclosure reports. Obstruction of justice is a felony and can carry a sentence including fines and up to 10 years in prison. A conviction of making a false report could also come with a fine or several months in jail. The SBOE investigation followed a complaint filed by then chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, Tom Fetzer. The board sent a letter to all gubernatorial candidates in the 2004 and 2008 campaigns directing them to disclose any air travel. The Perdue campaign responded with as many as 41 unreported flights, 35 in 2008 and six in 2004. Bev Perdue knew Stubbs and Reichard were working on arranging campaign flights as soon as 2006. Her former finance director Michael Hayden said she told him about those arrangements. Reichard told state investigators he would contact Stubbs to arrange flights but said he didn’t recall any conversation about how to account for the travel. One flight in particular still raises questions - a trip Perdue took to Michigan on September 12, 2007 for a private campaign event. A volunteer for the Perdue campaign, Gardner Payne, told

November/December 2011

CAPITOL CONNECTION “Truth in Lending” Needed for Taxpayers

state board investigators the event was organized by Singh Development, LLC. Reichard knew the owners of that company. In fact, the Singhs gave the Perdue campaign the maximum individual contribution of $4,000 the day of the flight to Michigan. After the SBOE asked Perdue’s attorney (Wallace) about the flight, he said it was missed in an internal audit. The campaign then submitted a payment for the flight. Reichard and other members of the Perdue campaign committee gave the State Board several reasons why the flights were not properly reported. He said the committee didn’t have a process for tracking and disclosing information on flights. State Board staff, however, found there was indeed a process in place to obtain that information. The staffer who created the campaign calendar for the Perdue committee, Carol Young, said information on all of the flights would have been in the calendar. Young also said she was told by Perdue staffer, Don Hobart, to create a spreadsheet of all flights in which she included everything she could find about each flight. Reichard, Sitton and Stubbs have already appeared before a magistrate and released on bond. There is also an ongoing federal investigation of the Perdue campaign committee.

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BY BRIAN BALFOUR

Picture this scenario: you are sitting down to sign mortgage documents for a sizeable loan to purchase a home. When you look at the section of the contract detailing the loan amount, however, all it says is “this loan is for $200,000 for the purchase of the home at 123 Main St.” That’s it. No information about the interest rate, the length of the loan or the amount of interest payments that will be required. Imagine the justifiable outrage from consumer-interest groups and the cries of “predatory lending.” The public would demand that mortgage lenders disclose such vital information as the interest rate and payment schedule totals, including principle and interest. So why is there no uproar over such “predatory lending” practices when local governments borrow money in the name of taxpayers without disclosing this information? It’s not as though politicians are unaware of the ethical obligation for borrowers to be fully informed about the true nature of the debt they are about to acquire. Indeed, in order to “protect” consumers, the Federal government passed the “Truth in Lending” act in 1968. A significant part of this act involved language requiring lenders to disclose to borrowers a complete payment schedule of the loan – including principle and interest payments. Curiously, however, state and local governments here in North Carolina do not provide such “protections” to taxpayers when offering voters a chance to vote on a bond referendum – a loan that taxpayers will be forced to pay back with interest. (Of course, state and local lawmakers have decided to make it exceedingly rare to even get voter approval before issuing debt, but that is a separate issue.) According to state law, the only information required on the ballot for a

local government bond issue is the principle amount and the purpose of the borrowed funds. It is downright shameful that state and local politicians have not acted to correct this clear double-standard. They require private sector lenders to disclose interest rate and payments in a loan contract, but do not require the same level of transparency on government bond referenda. The issue of full transparency on bond referenda is one that is overdue for examination. For several years, a clear pattern has emerged, especially at the local level. Proposed tax increases go down to defeat by wide margins at the ballot box, but in the same localities, bond referenda are approved with similar ease. Such actions reflect a disconnect between voters’ clear opposition to higher taxes and their willingness to approve more government debt – likely to lead to higher taxes. Many believe this disconnect comes from a lack of information and understanding by a sizeable share of the voting public. Without making the interest rate and payments transparent on the ballot, many voters don’t realize the true debt burden they are approving. Furthermore, many less-informed voters may not realize that approving a bond issue actually increases the debt totals of their local government unit. Some mistakenly believe that bonds are merely an effort to direct already budgeted funds to a specific purpose. Such confusion has contributed to skyrocketing debt levels among local governments in North Carolina. Total debt obligations (principle plus interest) for all local governments across the state now surpass $44 billion. In light of these mounting debt concerns, it seems only fair that governments should provide the same kind of “consumer protection” to taxpayers as are applied to mortgage applicants.

Welfare Deal CONTINUED FROM PG. 1

Walters (D-Robeson) had invested in the land at the Brunswick County site and Perdue’s son, Garrett Perdue, is an attorney for the firm handling the deal. On October 6, “Project Soccer” officially fell through as Continental Tire announced its new site in Sumter, South Carolina. The South Carolina government promised the company at least $35 million in payments, although it did not disclose the full cost of the incentive package. South Carolina Commerce Secretary Bobby Hitt noted that his state’s lower cost of business meant that he was able to offer smaller incentive deals than more expensive business climates such as North Carolina. In the aftermath of the project’s collapse, the offices of Senate President

Pro Tempore Phil Berger and Gov. Perdue exchanged harsh words over who was to blame for the fiasco. However, the desirability of these types of incentives deals remains in question. Because these giveaways benefit one new company at the expense of existing North Carolina businesses, some studies have shown little to no long term benefit from these deals. Furthermore, the rosy job numbers and investments in the area economy trumpeted by the company and its allied politicians are often exaggerations, particularly when the deals involve such staggering amounts of cash. In 2009, a $280 million package given to Dell for setting up a Winston-Salem factory ended with it closing and hundreds of workers losing jobs.


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CAPITOL CONNECTION Unemployment Analysis shows Room for Improvement Civitas

BY ANDREW BLACKBURN

North Carolina was headed on the right track (23 percent) than the United States (15 percent). Yet upon comparing unemployment rates since 2008, national levels have, on average, been 1.1 percent lower than in North Carolina. Only in Novem-

ber of 2010 did North Carolina match the national rate. However, any progress was lost as national rates dropped further and the state failed to keep up. Despite a lower unemployment rate and popular sentiment, North Carolina is

still facing an unemployment rate that is sitting well above the 9.9 percent of October 2010. While the holiday season will temporarily put some North Carolinians back to work, more must be done to restore job stability to our state.

Unemployment: Sept. 2008-Oct. 2011

12.0%

11.0%

Percent Unemployment Seasonally Adjusted

10.0%

9.0%

North Carolina United States

8.0%

7.0%

Sep-11 Oct-11

Aug-11

Jun-11 Jul-11

Apr-11 May-11

Jan-11

Feb-11 Mar-11

Nov-10 Dec-10

Sep-10 Oct-10

Aug-10

Jun-10 Jul-10

Apr-10 May-10

Jan-10

Feb-10 Mar-10

Nov-09 Dec-09

Sep-09 Oct-09

Aug-09

Jun-09 Jul-09

Apr-09 May-09

Jan-09

Feb-09 Mar-09

Nov-08 Dec-08

6.0% Sep-08 Oct-08

After four months of increasing unemployment, the latest Division of Employment Security report has put the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate at 10.4 percent, a tenth of a percentage point below the September rate, and returning to the previous rate in August. The decline marks the first time unemployment has gone down since March of this year and can be attributed to the addition of 5,500 non-farm jobs in October, along with private sector growth in eight out of the last 10 months. The national unemployment rate also fell one-tenth of a percentage point to 9.0 percent. Despite the drop in unemployment, analysis reveals North Carolina is far from showing any long term trend in job growth. Public opinion, however, does not seem to reflect that reality. A chart tracking unemployment rates since September of 2008 and an October Civitas Institute poll shows a disconnect between the numbers and public perception. Two questions comparing whether citizens thought North Carolina and the United States were on the right or wrong track found that more people thought

State Unemployment Rates, October 2011

Alleghany Gates CamdenCurrituck Ashe Vance Northampton 10.3 Surry Stokes Caswell Person 5.4 7.5 7.3 Hertford 10.2 13.4 Warren 11.3 10.1 9.2 Rockingham 9.8 Pasquotank 9.4 Granville 10.4 Watauga 11.2 13.2 Halifax Chowan 10.2 9.8 7.3 Wilkes 13.2 Yadkin Forsyth Orange 10.8 Perquimans Avery 10.8 Franklin Guilford Bertie Mitchell 9.8 9.6 6.2 Durham 8.9 9.3 Alamance 9.7 10 11.8 10.2 CaldwellAlexander Nash 7.7 Davie Edgecombe Madison Yancey 10 Tyrrell 13 11.6 10.1 Martin Washington 10.5 15.7 8.7 9 11.1 Wake Davidson Iredell 12.1 10.8 Burke 7.7 Wilson Dare Catawba 10.1 Rowan 10.6 Randolph Chatham Buncombe McDowell 11.5 9.7 Haywood 12 9.7 8.4 12 Pitt 11.6 7.5 10.7 8.6 Swain 9.7 Johnston Lincoln Greene Beaufort Lee Hyde Graham 12 Cabarrus Rutherford 9 10.6 9.1 Montgomery 10.6 12 Henderson 8.1 Harnett Wayne 14.1 Jackson 9.5 13.4 ClevelandGaston Polk Stanly 12 7.6 Moore 10.9 8.6 Lenoir Mecklenburg 8 Craven Cherokee 10.9 7.6 Macon 10.4 10.8 8.8 10 Transylvania 9.9 10.1 12.3 Clay 9.6 Pamlico 8.7 9.3 Jones Cumberland 8.4 Hoke Union Richmond Sampson Duplin Anson 9.9 9.7 9.6 9 12.9 8.4 12.2 8.8 Scotland Carteret 16.6 Onslow 8.2 Bladen Robeson 9 Source: Division of Employment Security 5.4 - 7.5 Pender 11.9 12.8 Map and chart data preliminary and 11.6

NC Counties

% Unemployment 7.6. - 9.5

not seasonally adjusted

9.6 - 11.5 11.6 - 13.5

Columbus 12.4

New Hanover 9.4 Brunswick 10.4

13.6 - 16.6 County ALAMANCE ALEXANDER ALLEGHANY ANSON ASHE AVERY BEAUFORT BERTIE BLADEN BRUNSWICK BUNCOMBE BURKE CABARRUS CALDWELL CAMDEN CARTERET CASWELL CATAWBA CHATHAM CHEROKEE CHOWAN CLAY CLEVELAND COLUMBUS CRAVEN

Oct-08 7.1 7.9 6.6 9.5 6.3 5.6 7.3 7.5 8.1 6.9 5.1 8.6 6.4 8.3 5.4 5 8.2 7.9 5.5 8.7 8.5 6 8.5 8.1 6.2

Oct-11 10 10.1 10.3 12.2 10.2 9.8 10.6 11.8 11.9 10.4 7.5 11.5 9.5 13 7.5 8.2 9.8 11.6 8.4 12.3 10.8 9.3 10.9 12.4 9.9

County CUMBERLAND CURRITUCK DARE DAVIDSON DAVIE DUPLIN DURHAM EDGECOMBE FORSYTH FRANKLIN GASTON GATES GRAHAM GRANVILLE GREENE HALIFAX HARNETT HAYWOOD HENDERSON HERTFORD HOKE HYDE IREDELL JACKSON JOHNSTON

2008 - 2011 Unemployment Comparison (Percent) Oct-08 Oct-11 County Oct-08 6.8 9.7 JONES 6.8 3.6 5.4 LEE 8.2 4.2 9.7 LENOIR 7.8 7.4 10.6 LINCOLN 7.2 6.9 10.5 MACON 5.3 5.9 8.8 MADISON 5.7 5.4 7.7 MARTIN 6.9 11.4 15.7 MCDOWELL 8.1 6.3 8.9 MECKLENBURG 6.6 6.7 9.7 MITCHELL 7.7 7.7 10.8 MONTGOMERY 8.3 5.2 7.3 MOORE 6.4 8.2 14.1 NASH 8.6 7 9.8 NEW HANOVER 5.4 7 9.1 NORTHAMPTON 7.7 9.7 13.2 ONSLOW 5.8 7.1 10.9 ORANGE 4.2 5.7 8.6 PAMLICO 5.7 5.1 7.6 PASQUOTANK 6.4 6.6 10.4 PENDER 6.4 6.3 9.6 PERQUIMANS 6.7 4.6 8.1 PERSON 7.3 6.5 10.1 PITT 7 4.3 8 POLK 5 6.1 9 RANDOLPH 6.7

Oct-11 9.9 12 10.1 10.6 9.6 8.7 10.8 12 10 10.2 12 8.8 11.6 9.4 11.3 9 6.2 8.4 10.2 11.6 9.3 9.4 9.7 7.6 9.7

County RICHMOND ROBESON ROCKINGHAM ROWAN RUTHERFORD SAMPSON SCOTLAND STANLY STOKES SURRY SWAIN TRANSYLVANIA TYRRELL UNION VANCE WAKE WARREN WASHINGTON WATAUGA WAYNE WILKES WILSON YADKIN YANCEY

Oct-08 9.5 8.1 7.9 7.2 8.7 5.4 11.7 7 6.1 8.3 5.5 5 6 6 9.8 5 9.7 7.2 4.1 6.3 8.2 7.9 6.1 7.2

Oct-11 12.9 12.8 11.2 10.7 13.4 8.4 16.6 10.4 9.2 10.1 12 8.7 9 9 13.4 7.7 13.2 12.1 7.3 8.6 10.8 12 9.6 11.1


nccivitas.org

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7

CAPITOL CONNECTION 2011 Conservative Effectiveness Ratings Released FRANCIS DE LUCA AND STAFF

Civitas

Blake, Blust, Moffitt named Most Conservative Legislators

100 with ing freshmen. They helped Republicans clude areas The 2011 Civitas Action Conserva0 represcore much higher, with state House Recovering tive Effectiveness Rankings are in and senting publicans moving from an average score economthey reveal a legislature much more conthe most of 58.7 percent in 2010 to an average of ic and servative than those in the past. Civitas liberal 91.2 percent (2011). The state Senate budget Action compiles a list of votes that can voting reRepublicans saw the same shift, movmatters, be defined as conservative or liberal and cord and ing from 56.6 percent in 2010 to 97.1 social/ scores accordingly. Legislators with the 100 reppercent this year. Many of the freshmen cultural highest scores are considered to be the resenting Republican members placed near the top topics, most conservative and, conversely, those the most in both chambers with a freshman beand eduwith the lowest scores are more liberal. conservaing tied for the top ranking in the state cation and Both chambers of the state legislature tive. House and nine of the 11 freshmen GOP regulatory scored more conservatively in 2011. The T h e senators tied for the number two ranking. r e f o r m s . Sen. Harris Blake (R-Moore), left, was the highest state House went from an overall averconservatively scored legislator. Rep. Earline Parmon impact of The more conservative nature of this Civitas (D-Forsyth), right, was ranked most liberal. age of 31.5 percent in 2010 to an average the 2010 year’s legislature was also reflected among Action score of 62.4 percent. In comparison, the election was most evident in the large Democrats. The average score for House analyzes votes from several categories to state Senate demonstrated even greater number of first time legislators, especially Democrats went from 10.5 percent in reflect a more balanced picture of each gains, shifting from an overall average of among Republicans, with about one-third 2010 to 25 percent this year. The Demolegislator. House and Senate members are 26.5 percent in 2010 to 75.7 percent this of the GOP members in each body becrats in the state Senate saw an even more scored on an effectiveness scale from 0 to year. impressive rise in scores, increasing This year’s Conservative EffecFor more information on the individual votes by legislators go to www.civitasaction.org from an average of 7.2 percent in tiveness Rankings scored 50 votes 2010 to an average of 38.4 perin the state House and 43 votes in or to get a copy of all the votes and legislative rankings, send a postcard or envelope with a cent. return address to “Civitas Rankings” 100 South Harrington St. Raleigh, N.C. 27603 the state Senate. These votes inRCS#=Roll Call Sequence Number HB 2 (2R) - Protect Healthcare Freedom - RCS# 19 - (30-18) - This bill protects North Carolinians from some of the worst provisions of Obamacare. It also directs the Attorney General to join the Florida multistate lawsuit against Obamacare and its individual mandate provision. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow individuals to make their own healthcare decisions without the intrusion of the government. HB 3 (2R) - Exclusionary Rule/Good Faith Exception - RCS# 59 - (48-1) - This bill adds a good faith exception to the exclusionary rule and calls on the NC Supreme Court to overturn State v. Carter, 322 N.C. 709 (1988). Carter held the good faith exclusion did not apply under NC law. Civitas believes the conservative position is that evidence obtained by law enforcement officers acting in good faith under a search warrant should be admitted in a criminal trial, even if the search warrant has a technical defect. Criminal trials in NC courts should operate similarly to criminal trials in federal courts. HB 36 (2R) - Employers & Local Gov’t Must Use EVerify - RCS# 635 - (46-1) - This bill requires counties, cities, and employers with 25 or more employees to use the federal E-Verify program to confirm the legal work authorization status of new employees. Civitas believes the conservative position is to enforce the law and ensure only citizens and legal residents with work permits hold enmployment in North Carolina. HB 92 (2R) - Repeal Land Transfer Tax - RCS# 97 (40-8) - This bill repeals the land transfer tax, which granted counties the option of levying a tax on the sale of real property. Civitas believes the conservative position is to not add another type of tax and the additional burden that would be placed on the sale and transfer of real property. HB 129 (3R) - Level Playing Field/Local Gov’t Competition - RCS# 266 - (39-10) - This bill ensures that where there is competition between the private sector and government a framework is set up to not discourage private investment and job creation. It requires municipalities that want to operate their own cable systems to take steps to make them more transparent and to not operate them with taxpayer subsidies. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect jobs and promote investment by ensuring private enterprises are

SENATE VOTES 2011

treated fairly within the market.

HB 200 (VO) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 677 - (31-19) - This bill is the first budget legislation that has ever been vetoed and overridden. It cuts unnecessary spending without raising taxes. Civitas believes the conservative position is to avoid unnecessary spending while ensuring the tax burden on individuals and businesses is minimized as much as possible. HB 200 (A5) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 379 - (19-31) - This amendment allows Planned Parenthood to receive federal funding. Civitas believes the conservative position is to not fund organizations that perform abortions with taxpayer funding. HB 200 (A8) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 382 - (3-47) - This amendment imposes a .75% sales tax increase and modifies privilege taxes. Civitas believes the conservative position is to minimize the amount of taxes and burden placed on businesses and individuals. HB 215 (2R) - Unborn Victims of Violence Act/Ethen’s Law - RCS# 185 - (45-4) - This bill creates criminal offenses for violent acts that cause the death or injury of an unborn child or that are committed against the pregnant mother. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect the life of the unborn child and enforce criminal offenses against unborn victims. HB 215 (A1) - Unborn Victims of Violence Act/Ethen’s Law - RCS# 183 - (14-35) - This amendment adds qualifications for the status of an unborn victim by stating that all of the offenses listed in the legislation apply to an unborn child only if the child is in utero for a minimum of 20 weeks. Civitas believes the conservative position is that life begins from inception. HB 215 (A2) - Unborn Victims of Violence Act/Ethen’s Law - RCS# 184 - (13-36) - This amendment adds an element to any of the offenses listed that the defendant knew or should have known that the unborn victim’s mother was pregnant. Civitas believes the conservative position is that a child is an unborn victim if the defendant harmed the child regardless of whether the defendant knew the woman was pregnant. HB 342 (2R) - High School Accreditation - RCS# 645 - (32-15) - This bill prohibits public higher education institutions from using the accreditation status, or lack

thereof, of a NC secondary school as a factor in determining student admissions, loans, scholarships, or other educational activity. Civitas believes the conservative position is to focus on the quality of the student applying by assessing factors such as grades, difficulty of courses, extracurricular activities and other relevant factors and to limit the influence of outside accreditation agencies on important higher education admissions determinations. HB 344 (2R) - Tax Credits for Children with Disabilities - RCS# 717 - (44-5) - This bill provides an individual income tax credit for children with disabilities who require special education and creates a fund for special education and related services. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow greater school choice for all children. HB 351 (2R) - Restore Confidence in Government RCS# 718 - (31-19) - This bill reduces the potential for election fraud by requiring a photo ID at the ballot box. It also provides a free ID to those who need one in order to vote. Civitas believes the conservative position is to preserve the integrity of our electoral process by ensuring only legal, registered voters participate in their proper electoral district. HB 542 (3R) - Tax Reform for Citizens and Businesses - RCS# 682 - (42-8) - This bill creates a more favorable environment for job creation by lowering the cost to employ more workers. Civitas believes the conservative position is to promote a fairer ,more certain legal climate to encourage job creation and lower the cost to hire employees. HB 578 (2R) - State Health Plan/Additional Changes - RCS# 343 - (33-16) - This bill transfers the State Health Plan to the state treasurer and offers a premiumfree basic plan for at least one year based on available cash reserves. Civitas believes the conservative position is to expect a minimal premium contribution from state employee participants to cover their health insurance plans. Healthcare services are most efficient and effective when patients understand and appreciate the direct cost associated with the healthcare services provided. HB 588 (3R) - The Founding Principles Act - RCS# 701 - (50-0) - This bill requires local boards of education to implement a high school course that includes the teaching of the Creator-endowed inalienable rights


8

November/December 2011

Civitas

CAPITOL CONNECTION

nccivitas.org

SENATE VOTES (CONTINUED) of the people, structure of government, election system, importance of private property rights, due process, and federalism. The legislation also requires a passing grade in the course to graduate from high school. Civitas believes the conservative position is to promote the teaching of founding principles of limited government, individual freedom, personal responsibility and respect for the free market. HB 650 (2R) - Amend Various Gun Laws/Castle Doctrine - RCS# 659 - (37-9) - This bill presumes that a lawful occupant of a home, automobile, or workplace has reasonable fear of imminent death or serious bodily harm to himself or another when using defensive or deadly force against someone who has unlawfully and forcibly entered the premise. It also amends several gun laws regarding the right to own, possess and carry a firearm. Civitas believes the conservative position is to support the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and allow individuals to protect themselves, their families and their property from unlawful and dangerous intruders. HB 744 (3R) - Safe Students Act - RCS# 702 - (500) - This bill requires school principals to have parents present a copy of the child’s birth certificate and a copy of the child’s immunization records when the child is first registered for school. Civitas believes the conservative position is to verify all students legal status and to keep students safe by requiring they have the proper immunizations. HB 751 (3R) - Various Economic Development Incentives - RCS# 823 - (44-0) - This bill expands the excise tax on certain machinery and equipment used at port facilities and manufacturing and distribution facilities, provides tax breaks for one business and increases state debt with no vote of the people. Civitas believes the conservative position is to treat all busineses equally in taxing and that no debt should be incurred without a vote of the people as per the state Constitution. HB 845 (3R) - Annexation Reform Act of 2011 - RCS# 680 - (37-11) - This bill reforms the NC involuntary annexation laws. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect private property owners and allow citizens to determine whether or not they want to be part of a city. HB 854 (2R) - Woman’s Right to Know Act - RCS# 733 - (29-20) - This bill requires women considering abortion to review the risks and alternatives, view an ultrasound of the child, and wait 24 hours before having the procedure. Civitas believes the conservative position is to provide patients as much information as possible prior to a procedure and to protect the sanctity of life that begins at conception. SB 8 (3R) - No Cap on Number of Charter Schools - RCS# 29 - (33-17) - This bill removes the cap on charter schools and gives the State Board of Education discretion in granting final approval of charter school applications. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow greater school choice for all children.

educational opportunities and a weighted lottery system would undermine equal opportunity to access to charter schools. SB 13 (VO) - Balanced Budget Act of 2011 - RCS# 66 - (31-19) - This bill attempted to help balance the budget when the state faced billions of dollars in budget deficits. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce irresponsible spending during an economic downturn and work to spur job growth through prudent fiscal and tax policies. SB 22 (2R) - APA Rules: Limit Additional Costs - RCS# 14 - (49-1) - This bill attempts to limit new agency regulatory requirements that result in substantial additional costs. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce regulatory costs on business in order to increase productivity and promote job growth. SB 27 (3R) - Local Annexations Subject to 60% Petition - RCS# 57 - (36-12) - This bill requires that specified local pending involuntary annexations be subject to a petition to deny the annexation by property owners of at least 60 percent of the parcels located in the area. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect private property owners and allow citizens to determine whether or not they want to be part of a city. SB 33 (VO) - Medical Liability Reforms - RCS# 895 - (35-12) - This bill caps non-economic (pain and suffering) awards in medical liability lawsuits to $500,000 and begins to curb medical malpractice lawsuits. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce the uncertainty involved in medical liability lawsuits and increase the availability of healthcare services, particularly high-risk areas such as obsterics. SB 47 (2R) - Restore Partisan Judicial Elections - RCS# 454 - (36-13) - This bill enables candidates for judicial races to declare their party affiliation and have that affiliation appear on the ballot. Civitas believes the conservative position is to let voters know what political party judicial candidates belong to so they can make more informed decisions at the polls. SB 109 (3R) - Spending Cuts for the Current Fiscal Year - RCS# 49 - (46-4) - This bill encourages the reduction of General Fund expenditures for the 20102011 fiscal year and identifies funds in the non-General Funds account that can be transferred to the General Fund. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce unnecessary government spending and work towards a balanced budget. SB 205 (2R) - No Benefits for Illegal Aliens - RCS# 475 - (45-5) - This bill establishes documents required for individuals to qualify for federal and state benefits and requirement for reporting immigration violations. Establishes that only citizens and legal residents are eligible for taxpayer funded benefits. Civitas believes the conservative position is to ensure only citizens and legal residents have access to federal and state benefits.

SB 8 (A1) - No Cap on Number of Charter Schools - RCS# 22 - (19-31) - This amendment limits the number of charter schools to five per year in one local school administrative unit and no more than 150 charter schools statewide. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow greater school choice for all children.

SB 265 (MC) - State Health Plan/Appropriations Transfer - RCS# 152 - (31-18) - This bill makes appropriations to the State Health Plan in conjunction with HB 578 and SB 323. Civitas believes the conservative position is to expect a minimal premium contribution from state employee participants to cover their health insurance plans and that the health market works best when there are clear indicators between price paid and services provided.

SB 8 (A3) - No Cap on Number of Charter Schools - RCS# 24 - (19-31) - This amendment establishes a weighted lottery system to determine admission to charter schools. Civitas believes the conservative position is to provide children with the greatest choice in

SB 303 (2R) - Real ID Compliance/Limited Duration Licenses - RCS# 456 - (43-6) - This bill ensures resident alien or tourists do not have use of a valid driver’s license once their Visa expires. Civitas believes the conservative position is to ensure only citizens and legal

residents have access to federal and state documentation that may be used to obtain benefits and voting rights. SB 308 (2R) - State Regulation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions - RCS# 86 - (49-0) - This bill prohibits state agencies from adopting or enforcing a rule that regulate greenhouse gas emissions or limits human activity for the purpose of greenhouse gas emissions unless the rule is required by federal law or regulation or is more stringent than federal law or regulation. Civitas believes the conservative position is to limit any unnecessary and burdensome regulations that would increase costs and limit job creation. SB 323 (ACR) - State Hlth Plan/Appropriations & Transfer II - RCS# 257 - (31-17) - This bill makes appropriations to the State Health Plan in conjunction with HB 578 and SB 323. Civitas believes the conservative position is to expect a minimal premium contribution from state employee participants to cover their health insurance plans and that the health market works best when there are clear indicators between price paid and services provided. SB 456 (2R) - Candidate List Party or Unaffiliated Status - RCS# 457 - (45-4) - This bill allows a candidate to list party affiliation or unaffiliated status on the ballot in all elections. Civitas believes the conservative position is to let voters know what party candidates belong to so voters can make a more informed decision at the polls. SB 496 (VO) - Medicaid and Health Choice Provider Req - RCS# 894 - (47-1) - This bill modifies some provider requirements for the state’s Medicaid program and transfers the final decision on any appeals from the Department of Health and Human Services to an administration law judge. Civitas believes the conservative position is to streamline governmental programs to make them as effective and efficient as possible. SB 514 (3R) - Defense of Marriage - RCS# 933 - (3016) - This bill offers an amendment to the state Constitution to declare that marriage between one man and one woman is the only legal domestic union recognized in the state. Civitas believes the conservative position is that the only marriage the state should recognize is between one man and one woman. SB 532 (VO) - ESC/Jobs Reform - RCS# 897 - (31-17) - This bill reforms unemployment benefit requirements and moves the Employment Security Commission to the Department of Commerce. Civitas believes the conservative position is to streamline governmental programs to make them as effective and efficient as possible. SB 709 (VO) - Energy Jobs Act - RCS# 896 - (31-17) This bill encourages the expansion of the energy industry in North Carolina and creates jobs. Civitas believes the conservative position is encourage energy exploration and production in North Carolina to generate new jobs and tax revenue. SB 755 (2R) - Ed. Employees Ass’n./Equal Access Act - RCS# 502 - (32-16) - This bill attempts to provide equal access to school employees and that schools should not favor nor endorse any specific education employee association. Civitas believes the conservative position is to give teachers fair access to all education entities and that schools should not provide favors to or exclusive relationships with a particular organization. SB 781 (3R) - Regulatory Reform Act of 2011 - RCS# 529 - (49-0) - This bill cuts back on state agencies’ regulatory authority and adds transparency to the rulemaking process. Civitas believes the conservative position is to ensure transparency in government and avoid unnecessary regulations.

To see how your legislator scored, visit www.civitasaction.org


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Civitas

CAPITOL CONNECTION

November/December 2011

9

HOUSE VOTES 2011 HB 2 (VO) - Protect Health Care Freedom - RCS# 94 - (68-51) - This bill protects North Carolinians from some of the worst provisions of Obamacare. It also directs the Attorney General to join the Florida multistate lawsuit against Obamacare and its individual mandate provision. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow individuals to make their own healthcare decisions without the intrusion of the government. HB 3 (2R) - Exclusionary Rule/Good Faith Exception - RCS# 20 - (81-36) - This bill adds a good faith exception to the exclusionary rule and calls on the NC Supreme Court to overturn State v. Carter, 322 N.C. 709 (1988). Carter held the good faith exclusion did not apply under NC law. Civitas believes the conservative position is that evidence obtained by law enforcement officers acting in good faith under a search warrant should be admitted in a criminal trial, even if the search warrant has a technical defect. Criminal trials in NC courts should operate similarly to criminal trials in federal courts. HB 8 (3R) - Eminent Domain - RCS# 351 - (98-18) This bill would give voters an opportunity to vote on an amendment to the state Constitution to prohibit condemnation of private property except for a valid public use. It also provides for just compensation with the right of a jury trial. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect private property rights by preventing government from taking property from one owner for the benefit of another owner under the guise of economic development. HB 32 (2R) - Electoral Freedom Act of 2011 - RCS# 754 - (68-49) - This bill significantly reduces the number of signatures required for a new political party or an unaffiliated candidate to qualify for ballot access. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow voters more choice in candidates and parties on North Carolina ballots. HB 33 (3R) - Consular Documents Not Acceptable as ID - RCS# 175 - (66-50) - This bill forbids certain consulate and embassy documents, including the matricula consular, from being used as valid identification for North Carolina governmental and law enforcement purposes. Civitas believes the conservative position is to only accept identification from valid U.S and state agencies to ensure the safety and integrity of our communities. HB 36 (3R) - Employers & Local Gov’t Must Use EVerify - RCS# 861 - (68-43) - This bill requires counties, cities, and employers with 25 or more employees to use the federal E-Verify program to confirm the legal work authorization status of new employees. Civitas believes the conservative position is to enforce the law and ensure only citizens and legal residents with work permits hold enmployment in North Carolina. HB 92 (3R) - Repeal Land Transfer Tax - RCS# 82 (78-38) - This bill repeals the land transfer tax, which granted counties the option of levying a tax on the sale of real property. Civitas believes the conservative position is to not add another type of tax and the additional burden that would be placed on the sale and transfer of real property. HB 129 (MC) - Level Playing Field/Local Gov’t Competition - RCS# 438 - (84-32) - This bill ensures that where there is competition between the private sector and government a framework is set up to not discourage private investment and job creation. It requires municipalities that want to operate their own cable systems to take steps to make them more transparent and to not operate them with taxpayer subsidies. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect jobs and promote investment by ensuring private enterprises are treated fairly within the market.

HB 200 (VO) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 999 - (73-46) - This bill is the first budget legislation that has ever been vetoed and overridden. It cuts unnecessary spending without raising taxes. Civitas believes the conservative position is to avoid unnecessary spending while ensuring the tax burden on individuals and businesses is minimized as much as possible. HB 200 (CM) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 1000 - (72-47) - This bill is the first budget legislation that has ever been vetoed and overridden. The clincher vote removes the possibility to reconsider the veto override vote. Civitas believes the conservative position is to avoid unnecessary spending while ensuring the tax burden on individuals and businesses is minimized as much as possible. HB 200 (A21) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 412 - (53-65) - This amendment allows Planned Parenthood to receive federal funding. Civitas believes the conservative position is to not fund organizations that perform abortions with taxpayer funding. HB 200 (A31) - Appropriations Act of 2011 - RCS# 422 - (42-71) - This amendment allocates $1.5 million to the Energy Centers of NC State University, NC A&T University, and Appalachian State University through the Dept. of Commerce. Civitas believes the conservative position is to not earmark funding to specific operating entities. HB 215 (MC) - Unborn Victims of Violence Act/ Ethen’s Law - RCS# 293 - (78-39) - This bill creates criminal offenses for violent acts that cause the death or injury of an unborn child or that are committed against the pregnant mother. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect the life of the unborn child and enforce criminal offenses against unborn victims. HB 215 (A2) - Unborn Victims of Violence Act/ Ethen’s Law - RCS# 145 - (42-68) - This amendment adds qualifications for the status of an unborn victim. Specifically, it states that all of the offenses listed in the legislation apply to an unborn child if the child is in utero for a minimum of 20 weeks and that some offenses will apply if the child is in utero for 12 weeks. Civitas believes the conservative position is that life begins from conception and that all children are deserving of the protection this bill would provide. HB 215 (A3) - Unborn Victims of Violence Act/Ethen’s Law - RCS# 146 - (46-66) - This amendment adds an element to any of the offenses listed that the defendant knew or should have known that the unborn victim’s mother was pregnant. Civitas believes the conservative position is that a child is an unborn victim if the defendant harmed the child regardless of whether the defendant knew the woman was pregnant. HB 300 (2R) - Election Fairness Act of 2011 - RCS# 890 - (91-24) - This bill rotates the order of candidates and political parties as they appear on the ballot. Civitas believes the conservative position is to ensure voters make an informed, conscientious decision on which candidates they select and by rotating the order, voters are more likely to actively and knowingly choose candidates. HB 342 (2R) - High School Accreditation - RCS# 737 - (73-41) - This bill prohibits public higher education institutions from using the accreditation status, or lack thereof, of a NC secondary school as a factor in determining student admissions, loans, scholarships, or other educational activity. Civitas believes the conservative position is to focus on the quality of the student applying by assessing factors such as grades, difficulty of courses, extracurricular activities and other relevant factors and to limit the influence of outside accredita-

tion agencies on important higher education admissions determinations. HB 344 (2R) - Tax Credits for Children with Disabilities - RCS# 796 - (73-39) - This bill provides an individual income tax credit for children with disabilities who require special education and creates a fund for special education and related services. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow greater school choice for all children. HB 344 (A1) - Tax Credits for Children with Disabilities - RCS# 793 - (65-48) - This amendment reduces the credit amount available to parents to send their children to private school, limiting their school choice options. Civitas believes the conservative position is to allow greater school choice for all children. HB 344 (A2) - Tax Credits for Children with Disabilities - RCS# 794 - (46-63) - This amendment adds mental retardation as an element necessary to receive the tax credit. Civitas believes the conservative position is allow greater school choice for all students and not restrict access to the tax credit beyond what the current public school system regards as “disabled.” HB 351 (VO) - Restore Confidence in Government RCS# 1278 - (68-51) - This bill reduces the potential for election fraud by requiring a photo ID at the ballot box. It also provides a free ID to those who need one in order to vote. Civitas believes the conservative position is to preserve the integrity of our electoral process by ensuring only legal, registered voters participate in their proper electoral district. HB 452 (3R) - Judicial Elections Changes - RCS# 779 - (67-50) - This bill repeals public campaign financing for Council of State races and makes judicial elections partisan. It also eliminates the “instant runoff” voting for judicial offices, using election by plurality instead. Civitas believes the conservative position is to let voters know the political party of judicial candidates so they can make a more informed decision. The elimination of taxpayer campaign financing is in line with the First Amendment by not only encouraging more freedom of speech through voluntary contributions but stops compelled speech by taxpayers being forced to support candidates with which they disagree. HB 483 (3R) - DNA Samples/Additional Felonies - RCS# 447 - (83-34) - This bill expands the list of felonies for which a DNA sample must be taken upon arrest and appropriates the funds to facilitate the expansion. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect our citizens from crime and repeat offenders. HB 491 (2R) - Repeal State Capital Facilities Finance Act - RCS# 761 - (65-52) - This bill would repeal the statutory authority allowing state government to issue new state debt without voter approval – most notably through investment vehicles known as Certificates of Participation. Civitas believes the conservative position is that all government debt should be subject to voter approval. HB 542 (2R) - Tort Reform for Citizens and Businesses - RCS# 645 - (85-32) - This bill creates a more favorable environment for job creation by lowering the cost to employ more workers. Civitas believes the conservative position is to promote a fairer, more certain legal climate to encourage job creation and lower the cost to hire employees. HB 572 (2R) -Accountability for Publicly Funded Nonprofits - RCS# 542 - (93-12) - This bill requires certain public entities to provide financial information upon request or maintain financial information on their website. Civitas believes the conservative position is


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Civitas

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CAPITOL CONNECTION

HOUSE VOTES (CONTINUED) to encourage greater transparency and accountability among non-profit organizations that receive public money. HB 578 (MC) - State Health Plan/Additional Changes - RCS# 528 - (90-24) - This bill transfers the State Health Plan to the state treasurer and offers a premiumfree basic plan for at least one year based on available cash reserves. Civitas believes the conservative position is to expect a minimal premium contribution from state employee participants to cover their health insurance plans. Healthcare services are most efficient and effective when patients understand and appreciate the direct cost associated with the healthcare services provided. HB 588 (2R) - The Founding Principles Act - RCS# 848 - (103-11) - This bill requires local boards of education to implement a high school course that includes the teaching of the Creator-endowed inalienable rights of the people, structure of government, election system, importance of private property rights, due process, and federalism. The legislation also requires a passing grade in the course to graduate from high school. Civitas believes the conservative position is to promote the teaching of founding principles of limited government, expanded individual freedom, personal responsibility and respect for the free market. HB 606 (3R) - Sheriff/Inspect Prescription Drug Records - RCS# 922 - (92-25) - This bill allows a sheriff or designated deputy sheriff to investigate and obtain data, without a duly issued search warrant, on the use of controlled substances through a reporting system maintained by the Dept. of Health and Human Services. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect the privacy of citizens’ medical prescription treatments and decisions in accordance with the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. HB 650 (3R) - Amend Various Gun Laws/Castle Doctrine - RCS# 798 - (77-39) - This bill presumes that a lawful occupant of a home, automobile, or workplace has reasonable fear of imminent death or serious bodily harm to himself or another when using defensive or deadly force against someone who has unlawfully and forcibly entered the premise. It also amends several gun laws regarding the right to own, possess and carry a firearm. Civitas believes the conservative position is to support the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and allow individuals to protect themselves, their families and their property from unlawful and dangerous intruders. HB 658 (3R) - Change Early Voting Period - RCS# 519 - (60-58) - This bill shortens the current two and a half week early voting period by one week. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect the integrity of the outcome of NC elections by allowing local election boards to adequately complete their work of verifying last-minute voter registrations prior to the start of voting. HB 744 (3R) - Safe Students Act - RCS# 828 - (7727) - This bill requires school principals to have parents present a copy of a child’s birth certificate and a copy of the child’s immunization records when the child is first registered for school. Civitas believes the conservative position is to verify all students legal status and to keep students safe by requiring they have the proper immunizations. HB 751 (MC) - Various Economic Development Incentives - RCS# 1232 - (73-32) - This bill expands the excise tax on certain machinery and equipment used at port facilities and manufacturing and distribution facilities, provides tax breaks for one business and increases state debt with no vote of the people. Civitas believes the conservative position is to treat all busineses equally

in taxing and that no debt should be incurred without a vote of the people as per the state Constitution. HB 824 (3R) - Nonpartisan Redistricting Process RCS# 927 - (88-27) - This bill establishes a non-partisan redistricting process with a five member, appointed advisory commission. Civitas believes the conservative position is to require our elected legislative officials to redistrict and hold them accountable for redistricting decisions rather than an appointed commission. HB 845 (3R) - Annexation Reform Act of 2011 - RCS# 488 - (107-9) - This bill reforms the NC involuntary annexation laws. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect private property owners and allow citizens to determine whether or not they want to be part of a city. HB 854 (VO) - Woman’s Right to Know Act - RCS# 1273 - (72-47) - “This bill requires women considering abortion to review the risks and alternatives, view an ultrasound of the child, and wait 24 hours before having the procedure. Civitas believes the conservative position is to provide patients as much information as possible prior to a procedure and to protect the sanctity of life that begins at conception.” SB 9 (2R) - No Discriminatory Purpose in Death Penalty - RCS# 1136 - (64-52) - This bill amends the Racial Justice Act by beginning to restore the concept that justice is blind and that random statistics have no place in the courts. Civitas believes the conservative position is to ensure that justice is served in a fair and legal manner and is blind to the issue of race. SB 13 (3R) - Balanced Budget Act of 2011 - RCS# 21 - (66-51) - This bill attempted to help balance the budget when the state faced billions of dollars in budget deficits. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce irresponsible spending during an economic downturn and work to spur job growth through prudent fiscal and tax policies. SB 22 (2R) - APA Rules: Limit Additional Costs. - RCS# 93 - (80-39) - This bill attempts to limit new agency regulatory requirements that result in substantial additional costs. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce regulatory costs on business in order to increase productivity and promote job growth. SB 27 (2R) - Local Annexations Subject to 60% Petition - RCS# 1185 - (103-2) - This bill requires that specified local pending involuntary annexations be subject to a petition to deny the annexation by property owners of at least 60 percent of the parcels located in the area. Civitas believes the conservative position is to protect private property owners and allow citizens to determine whether or not they want to be part of a city. SB 33 (VO) - Medical Liability Reforms - RCS#1272 - (74-42) - This bill caps non-economic (pain and suffering) awards in medical liability lawsuits to $500,000 and begins to curb medical malpractice lawsuits. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce the uncertainty involved in medical liability lawsuits and increase the availability of healthcare services, particularly high-risk areas such as obsterics. SB 47 (2R) - Restore Partisan Judicial Elections - RCS# 1165 - (95-10) - This bill enables candidates for judicial races to declare their party affiliation and have that affiliation appear on the ballot. Civitas believes the conservative position is to let voters know what political party judicial candidates belong to so they can make more informed decisions at the polls. SB 109 (2R) - Spending Cuts for the Current Fiscal Year - RCS# 110 - (79-37) - This bill encourages the

reduction of General Fund expenditures for the 20102011 fiscal year and identifies funds in the non-General Funds account that can be transferred to the General Fund. Civitas believes the conservative position is to reduce unnecessary government spending and work towards a healthy, balanced budget. SB 265 ( 3R) - State Health Plan/Appropriations and Transfer - RCS# 188 - (66-53) - This bill makes appropriations to the State Health Plan in conjunction with HB 578 and SB 323. Civitas believes the conservative position is to expect a minimal premium contribution from state employee participants to cover their health insurance plans and that the health market works best when there are clear indicators between price paid and services provided. SB 323 (ACR) - State Hlth Plan/Appropriations & Transfer II - RCS# 450 - (66-53) - This bill makes appropriations to the State Health Plan in conjunction with HB 578 and SB 323. Civitas believes the conservative position is to expect a minimal premium contribution from state employee participants to cover their health insurance plans and that the health market works best when there are clear indicators between price paid and services provided. SB 496 (VO) - Medicaid and Health Choice Provider Req. - RCS# 1264 - (74-41) - This bill modifies some provider requirements for the state’s Medicaid program and transfers the final decision on any appeals from the Department of Health and Human Services to an administration law judge. Civitas believes the conservative position is to streamline governmental programs to make them as effective and efficient as possible. SB 514 (3R) - Defense of Marriage - RCS# 1295 - (7542) - This bill offers an amendment to the state Constitution to declare that marriage between one man and one woman is the only legal domestic union recognized in the state. Civitas believes the conservative position is that the only marriage the state should recognize is between one man and one woman. SB 532 (VO) - ESC/Jobs Reform - RCS#1274 - (7247) - This bill reforms unemployment benefit requirements and moves the Employment Security Commission to the Department of Commerce. Civitas believes the conservative position is to streamline governmental programs to make them as effective and efficient as possible. SB 709 (3R) - Energy Jobs Act - RCS# 971 - (68-49) This bill encourages the expansion of the energy industry in North Carolina and creates jobs. Civitas believes the conservative position is encourage energy exploration and production in North Carolina to generate new jobs and tax revenue. SB 781 (VO) - Regulatory Reform Act of 2011 - RCS# 1263 - (76-42) - “This bill cuts back on state agencies’ regulatory authority and adds transparency to the rulemaking process. Civitas believes the conservative position is to ensure transparency in government and avoid unnecessary regulations.”

For more information on the individual votes by legislators go to www.civitasaction.org Or to get a copy of all the votes and legislative rankings, send a postcard or envelope with a return address to “Civitas Rankings” 100 South Harrington St. Raleigh, N.C. 27603


nccivitas.org

November/December 2011

11

CAPITOL CONNECTION Teacher Job Loss Accounts: Selective and Skewed Civitas

BY BOB LUEBKE

A late August press release from the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has spawned a flurry of stories about how state budget cuts have triggered massive teacher and staff layoffs around the state. The release declares “public schools have laid off eight percent of staff since 2008-09” and says 2,421 educators are expected to lose their jobs in 2011-12. Press outlets and education associations like the North Carolina Association of Educators (NCAE) along with liberal advocacy groups like Progress NC have publicized the numbers and their impacts on local schools. However, these groups have also failed to include any information which questions or downplays the scope of job losses. The problems with the DPI figures are considerable. First, the data is from self-reported surveys. Unlike unemployment surveys where company wage information can validate unemployment numbers, the DPI survey offers no comparable way to validate the data. Second, the survey results were released in late August at a time when many schools are still hiring. Third, while the focus seems to be on the impact of state budget reductions, the DPI survey data fails to distinguish job losses by source of funding. There is simply no way to tell if job losses are a result of local, state or federal funding changes. Finally, the DPI release quotes aggregate figures for both reduction in force (RIF, i.e., layoffs) as well as eliminated positions. Every year there is a certain level of natural turnover in positions. However, the DPI data fails to distinguish between natural turnover and turnover which is specifically budget related. To the extent that it does, the reported figures for eliminated positions are likely overstated. In addition to selective reporting, initial accounts

about the impacts of budget cuts appear wildly overestimated. According to the DPI release, 2,421 staff will lose jobs in 2011-12. If the expected losses are averaged out

2011-12 School Layoffs as a Percentage of Total LEA Workforce in Ten Largest LEAs

LEA

Layoffs as a Percentage of Total LEA Workforce

Wake County

.5%

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

1.4%

Guilford County Schools

0%

Forsyth County Schools

3.7%

Cumberland County Schools 4.1% Union County Schools

0%

Johnston County Schools

4.2%

Durham Public Schools

0%

Gaston County Schools

4.1%

Cabarrus County Schools

.8%

over all public schools (2,425), each school would lose less than one staff member. A survey of the 20 largest LEAs (Local Education Agency) showed, on average, they expect to eliminate about 70 unfilled positions and lay off about 13.5 teachers. On average, job losses comprised less than two percent of the total LEA workforce for the 20 largest LEAs. Interestingly, 12 of the 20 largest LEAs reported no teacher layoffs for the current school year. These include Wake County, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and Guilford County Schools. Most newspapers and traditional media treat the budget reductions as an unprecedented event. However, a full review of the DPI document shows the actual number of positions eliminated and total layoffs for 2009-10 (8,720) is remarkably close to the 2011-12 totals (8,804) for the same categories. Further calculations reveal that 63 percent of all eliminated positions and 61 percent of all layoffs included in the DPI report, which examines the last four budget years, were made during the three previous state budgets. In early November, David Brown of the Office of State Budget Management reported that as of November 1 the state had provided severance benefits to about 1,630 individuals, including 516 who were formerly employed in the public schools. While this number does not represent total job losses, it is far less than the estimate of 20-30,000 job losses used by leading Democrats. The reported numbers have set off a heated discussion among Democrats and Republicans about the real impacts of budget cuts in public education and elsewhere. Early indications suggest the huge projected job losses thrown about by critics during the budget debate were merely overblown rhetoric.

Occupy CONTINUED FROM PG. 1

personal and sovereign debt across the world. While both groups are decentralized, they are organized very differently. Generally, Tea Party groups are structured along similar lines as most social clubs with elected leadership and following Robert’s Rules of Order. While there is no overarching Tea Party structure, individual groups are generally chartered with recognizable, accountable leadership and shared common values. Conversely, the Occupy movement is run on a consensus basis by general assemblies. This structure is essentially leaderless except for loosely defined and self-selected “facilitators” who, presumably, maintain some semblance of order. This chaotic structure has kept the Occupy movement from effectively formulating coherent goals and policing those who get out of hand. The tactics used by the two groups could not be more different. The Tea Party was focused on traditional rallies where participants would gather in large numbers, express their grievances and then disperse. These mass rallies are an accepted part of America’s political theatre and were overwhelmingly peaceful and law abiding. The Occupy movements engaged in a tactic they called occupation where they would take over a space and remain there indefinitely. Major Occupy sites often saw the growth of makeshift tent cities with few sanitation facilities or other amenities. From their initial humble beginnings as a ragtag group of activists, the

Occupiers have grown and metastasized into something much more malignant. The group has been joined, and some would say co-opted, by hardcore anarchists and professional protesters. From Chapel Hill to Oakland to New York, confrontations with police have steadily increased as Occupiers are evicted from sites across the nation. Some Occupiers have favored more aggressive direct action methods. These tactics include deliberately courting confrontation with the police or even vandalism. In D.C., for example, Occupy protesters surrounded and intimidated a conference by the Tea Party affiliated Americans for Prosperity. Groups like Occupy Oakland have specifically endorsed what they call a “diversity of tactics” when dealing with police or conducting marches. One bylaw approved by the Occupy Oakland General Assembly stated: “We should be tolerant of each other’s approaches and respect different forms of protest, while being aware of our privilege or lack of it, especially when engaging with the police.” While Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party share some of the same complaints, they are very different movements. They can perhaps best be viewed as the thesis and antithesis of America’s reaction to the great recession. Though the long term effect each movement will have is unknown, what we have seen so far suggests that the Tea Party is much more mainstream and politically effective.

Occupy Raleigh supporters gather at the state Capitol building.

BATTLEGROUND NORTH CAROLINA A PROJECT OF THE CIVITAS INSTITUTE

MARCH 2-3, 2012

At the Raleigh Marriott, Crabtree Valley For more information, visit

WWW.BATTLEGROUNDNC.ORG

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Radio host and author Visit the website to stay up to date on additional speakers


12 November/December 2011

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CAPITOL CONNECTION

Naughty

2011

The North Carolina Association of Educators (NCAE)

Leadership receiving pay raises while members worried about their jobs

Bad Bill of the Year: HB 840 “Healthier and Greener Schools Act” Increasing the size of the education bureaucracy to enforce unrealistic and expensive requirements such as free breakfast for all and food taste tests in schools

Sen. Richard Stevens (R-Wake) and Sen. Stan Bingham (R-Davidson)

Choosing to be absent for Woman’s Right to Know veto override vote

Gov. Bev Perdue

Proposing Congressional elections be suspended for two years to “let them [Congress] help this country recover”

Former Gov. Mike Easley, Gov. Bev Perdue, and Budget Writers

Raiding the Disaster Relief Fund of $65 million over the past three years

Democracy NC Executive Director Bob Hall Calling voter ID effort a “sham and political trick”

Gov. Bev Perdue

Vetoing several bills including: voter ID, medical liability reform, Woman’s Right to Know, Protect Healthcare Freedom, Energy Jobs Act, and Regulatory Reform

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North Carolina State Auditor Beth Wood Proposing a 20 percent cut on all state programs that don’t provide performance measurements and a 25 percent cut on programs that provide incorrect information

Legislative Redistricting Committees

Receiving pre-clearance approval by the U.S. Department of Justice for new redistricting maps

Rep. Ruth Samuelson (R-Mecklenburg)

Sponsoring the Woman’s Right to Know Act and openly sharing her personal story during the debate

Democratic House Reps. Bill Owens, Tim Spear, Dewey Hill, Bill Brisson, and Jim Crawford Giving North Carolina a budget with no tax increases by voting to override Gov. Perdue’s budget veto

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Civitas Capitol Connection November/December 2011  

In this issue, Perdue's former campaign staffers are indicted by the Grand Jury, and the Civitas Action legislative rankings are released.