Homegoing Celebration for Eunice Green Formerly of Pinetops NC. (Wilson County)

My condolences goes out to Juanita Green and the family of the late Eunice Green.

I understand that Eunice passed on yesterday Saturday September 8, 2012.

Script.: Read Eccles. 3 and know, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven”

Song: Shekinah Glory Ministry-Jesus (Full Live Version)

The Obituary

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How the Republican Party Became the Party of Hate

I became an atheist because of the hatred generally associated with the Republican Party and their love of God. A party based upon: homophobia, xenophobia, racism, oppression as well as violence seems to be the norm, regardless of sex or age.

A story written by reporter Sarah Jones titled-What Do You Do With a 16-Year-Old Who Calls for the Assassination of Obama? Is proof positive that the conservative party is not the party of Abraham Lincoln, Dwight Eisenhower, Ricard Nixon or arguably, Ronald Reagan. It has morphed into some evil entity that even Richard Nixon would shudder at. (More)

OUR CHILDREN’S FUTURE AT STAKE: ACT TODAY TO STOP EDUCATION CUTS! – NEA

Federal Legislative Updates

News from Capitol Hill. . .

September 7, 2012

OUR CHILDREN’S FUTURE AT STAKE: ACT TODAY TO STOP EDUCATION CUTS!

Unless Congress acts soon, devastating “sequestration” cuts to education and other critical programs will go into effect on January 2, 2013.   When Congress returns next week, they will face a clear choice – to allow these cuts to proceed, harming students, families, communities, and our nation, or to take a balanced approach to reducing the deficit by asking the top two percent to pay their fair share.

The sequester cut would dramatically impact 9.35 million students by eliminating services, cutting financial aid and increasing class sizes.  As many as 80,500 jobs could be lost in early education, K-12 and postsecondary education. 

These cuts would come on top of cuts that Congress already leveled on education and other non-defense programs for the next decade under last summer’s debt law. It is absolutely critical that Congress hear a loud and clear message that non-defense discretionary programs like education CANNOT be cut more to satisfy debt reduction.  Rather, deficit reduction must take a balanced approach that ensures that those most able to do so are asked to pay their fair share. 

Take Action Today:

A CLEAR CHOICE: POLITICAL CONVENTIONS DRAW SHARP CONTRASTS ON EDUCATION

Over the past few weeks, the Republican and Democratic National Conventions highlighted the very real, high-stakes choice Americans will face this November.  The outcome of the election will impact education and the future of the middle class– determining whether all students will have the supports and resources necessary to succeed, whether educators will be respected and ensured a voice in what happens in their schools, and whether the middle class will continue to bear the disproportionate burden for economic recovery. 

Speakers at the Democratic Convention focused on education as the pathway to a better life and a stronger nation, and the need to support middle class families struggling to make ends meet.  And, they spoke of their respect for educators and other public servants who dedicate their lives to serving their nation:

  • President Obama said, “I don’t believe that firing teachers or kicking students off financial aid will grow the economy, or help us compete with the scientists and engineers coming out of China…“[Y]ou have a choice – we can gut education, or we can decide that in the United States of America, no child should have her dreams deferred because of a crowded classroom or a crumbling school.  No family should have to set aside a college acceptance letter because they don’t have the money.”
  • Recalling a lesson she and her husband, President Barack Obama, learned from their parents, Michelle Obama said:  “We learned about gratitude and humility — that so many people had a hand in our success, from the teachers who inspired us to the janitors who kept our school clean. And we were taught to value everyone’s contribution and treat everyone with respect.” 
  • Former President Bill Clinton in his remarks praised President Obama his support of community colleges and his efforts to make college affordable for all, noting “The President has supported community colleges and employers in working together to train people for open jobs in their communities. And…his student loan reform lowers the cost of federal student loans and even more important, gives students the right to repay the loans as a fixed percentage of their incomes for up to 20 years. That means no one will have to drop-out of college for fear they can’t repay their debt, and no one will have to turn down a job, as a teacher, a police officer or a small town doctor because it doesn’t pay enough to make the debt payments. This will change the future for young Americans.”

The Democratic platform approved at the Convention calls for listening to teachers, stating, “We Democrats honor our nation’s teachers, who do a heroic job for their students every day. If we want high-quality education for all our kids, we must listen to the people who are on the front lines.”  The platform also calls for preventing teacher layoffs, attracting and rewarding great teachers, turning around low-performing schools, helping keep college within reach for every student, and investing in community colleges. 

In contrast, speakers at the Republican National Convention spared little opportunity to heap blistering criticism on public education, educators and the unions that represent them.  Leading the way in bashing public education and teacher unions was New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.  Other featured speakers at the convention were Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan, whose budget proposal would impose severe cuts on education, health care and other programs and services that serve students and children in order to give even more deep tax cuts to millionaires, and governors Scott Walker of Wisconsin and John Kasich of Ohio, both of whom have spearheaded efforts to slash funding to schools and take away the right of educators to speak out on behalf of their students through collective bargaining.

The platform approved at the Republican Convention by the party and the Romney-Ryan ticket continued to advance misguided proposals that are contrary to what educators know firsthand works best for students.  Specifically, the platform supports diverting money from public schools for private school vouchers and allowing states to decide how to spend federal funds targeted at poor students and students with disabilities, an approach that ignores the historic federal role of addressing inequities, and the current trend among states to cut funding for education services for children with special needs. 

Take Action Today:

SHARE YOUR SUCCESSES: TELL US ABOUT YOUR CONVERSATIONS WITH MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

Did you see your Member of Congress in August at a back-to-school event, a Labor Day picnic, a   townhall meeting, your local supermarket, or somewhere else?  Did you talk to him/her about the issues that are important to your family and your students?  We know that NEA members are the best advocates for public education and educators! Now, we want to spread the word.  Share your successes by telling us about your conversations with Members of Congress.  You might be featured in an upcoming edition of the Ed Insider.  

CHEERS AND JEERS

Cheers to:

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President Barack Obama, who in his speech to the Democratic National Convention called for recruiting 100,000 math and science teachers in the next ten years, improving early childhood education, and giving two million workers the chance to learn skills at their community college that will lead directly to a job. 

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Vice President Joe Biden, who said in his speech before the Democratic National Convention, “They seem to think you create a culture of dependency when you provide a bright, young, qualified kid from a working-class family a loan to get to college, or when you provide a job-training program in a new industry for a dad who lost his job because it was outsourced.  ….[A]ll these men and women are looking for is a chance, just a chance to acquire the skills to be able to provide for their families so they can once again hold their heads high and lead independent lives with dignity.  That’s all they’re looking for.”

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Elizabeth Warren, United States Senate candidate from Massachusetts, who in her speech before the Democratic National Convention said in part, “I graduated from public schools and taught elementary school….This is a great country. I grew up in an America that invested in its kids and built a strong middle class; that allowed millions of children to rise from poverty and establish secure lives. An America that created Social Security and Medicare so that seniors could live with dignity; an America in which each generation built something solid so that the next generation could build something better.  But for many years now, our middle class has been chipped, squeezed, and hammered.  Talk to the construction worker I met from Malden, Massachusetts, who went nine months without finding work. Talk to the head of a manufacturing company in Franklin trying to protect jobs but worried about rising costs. Talk to the student in Worcester who worked hard to finish his college degree, and now he’s drowning in debt. Their fight is my fight, and it’s Barack Obama’s fight too.”

Jeers to:

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Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who at a campaign stop last month, articulated his belief that school bus drivers, and by extension all education support professionals, play no role in student achievement.  When a child makes the honor roll, Romney said, “I realize to get to school they’ve got to go on a bus. And the bus driver is driving the bus. But when [the student] makes the honor roll, I don’t credit the bus driver. I credit the kid who got the honor roll.”  Romney’s mean-spirited speech went on to degrade several other categories of public employees.

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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who at the Republican National Convention took aim at educators and their unions, saying “They said it was impossible to speak the truth to the teachers union. They were just too powerful.  Real teacher tenure reform that demands accountability and ends the guarantee of a job for life regardless of performance would never happen.” He went on, “They [Democrats] believe in pitting unions against teachers, educators against parents, and lobbyists against children.” Playing to the argument that teachers are separate and apart from the unions that they themselves created and lead, Christie said, “They believe in teachers unions. We believe in teachers.”

http://www.nea.org/home/19449.htm

Newsletter from the Office of Representative Angela Bryant

 

 

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NORTH CAROLINA GENERAL ASSEMBLY

 

Representative Angela R. Bryant

House of Representatives

 

Proudly Representing District 7 – Nash and Halifax Counties until Jan. 2013; District 7 – Nash and Franklin Counties for 2013-14 Session

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Volume IV, Issue 11

                                                   September 7, 2012

 

 

 

NEWS FROM RALEIGH…

 

I always welcome your comments, project updates, suggestions, and visits. My office door and electronic door is always open to you!  As always, thank you for your support! 

 

REP. BRYANT REPRESENTING DISTRICT 7 – NASH AND HALIFAX COUNTIES UNTIL JAN. 2013; DISTRICT 7 – NASH AND FRANKLIN COUNTIES

FOR 2013-14 SESSION

 

Representative Bryant will be representing Halifax county until Jan. 2013, the end of this term, while at the same time, making relationships in the new part of the district in Franklin/Nash counties.

 

Women Gathering at the General Assembly

 

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Rep. Bryant and other members of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. on June 6, 2012 at “The Gathering: Women at the NC General Assembly,” the first ever joint legislative advocacy day for African American women.  From left to right: Linda Johnson (Past Regional Director for Delta Sigma Theta), Rep. Bryant, and Bobbie Richardson (Franklin County Board of Education member). Women from Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., The Links, Inc., and National Council of Negro Women gathered on the Halifax Mall in Raleigh to send a message to and meet with their state legislators about issues that mattered most to women and their families and communities.

 

AROUND THE DISTRICT & MORE

 

·        Church on the Rise Peacemakers: Aftercare Program. The program will be from 3pm-6pm and will cost $50 per week for the first child and $35 per week for each additional child.  It begins September 4, 2012 and ends May 31, 2013.

Contact information:  Cheri Pullen (252) 314-5616 or Jesse Lewis (252) 903-8856.

  • Production dates for Play- “You Wouldn’t Expect,” which presents the stories of four of the almost 8,000 victims of the North Carolina sterilization program. The dates, times, and locations for the play are:
    • September 28th, 29th, October 5th, 6th at 7:00 p.m. at Nash Arts Center, 100 E. Washington Street, Nashville. Tickets at 252-459-4734.
    • October 7th, 2:00 p.m. at The Booker T Theatre, 170 East Thomas Street, Rocky Mount.  This performance will be followed by a panel discussion including a sterilization victim and state officials. Tickets at 252-459-4734.
    • October 13th, 7:00 p.m., at the McIntyre Auditorium, Edgecombe Community  College, 2009 W. Wilson Street, Tarboro, NC. Tickets available at the door.
    • October 17th, 7:00 p.m., at North Carolina Wesleyan College, Dunn Center for the Performing Arts, 3400 N Wesleyan Blvd, Rocky Mount. Tickets available at the door and at 252-985-5197 or boxoffice@ncwc.edu
    • October 21st, 3:00 p.m., at TheArtsCenter, 300-G Main Street, Carrboro, NC.  Tickets at 919-929-2787.

·        Healthy Food Financing Forum North Carolina Grown: Moving Healthy Food from the Farm to the Kitchen, hosted by the Support Center and Strategic Partners, Joseph S. Koury Convention Center, 3121 High Point Road at I-40, Greensboro, NC 27407. Tuesday, October 9, 9:00am -3:30pm.

·        Voices from The Valley: Patient-Provider Communication Along the Breast Cancer Continuum in Northeastern North Carolina, The Centre at Halifax Community College, 100 College Drive, Weldon, NC 27890. Saturday, November 3, 8:00am-3:00pm. For more information, visit http://www.gbdf.org/ccwelcome.html or call Angela Carter at (252)535-8623.

·        Adolescent Health Mini-SummitNovember 27, 10am-3pm at the McKimmon Center. NCSU, Raleigh, NC 27606.

 

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CONGRATULATIONS ARE IN ORDER…

 

The Rural Economic Development Center, Inc. has awarded the Town of Middlesex (Nash County) an $85,000 grant under the Building Reuse & Restoration Program for their “EastCoast Packaging Reuse Project.” The purpose the Building Reuse Program is to spur economic activity and job creation by assisting in the productive reuse of vacant building in small towns. It targets economic development projects in rural, distressed areas of the state.

The Town of Middlesex requested $100,000 to support the reuse of a 70,000 sq. ft. building located 10235 US264 Alternate. The building was constructed in 1973 and has been vacant for two years. East Coast Packaging, a manufacturer of custom packaging materials, will reuse the property to expand its operations. The company currently operates a facility in Youngsville and will relocate its entire operation to Middlesex upon completion of the renovation project. The company reported a baseline employment of 25 in North Carolina and will create eight new, full-time jobs with an average annual salary of $19,560 ($15,600-45,000). The company does not provide benefits. The total project cost is $955,000.

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North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources Secretary Linda A. Carlisle announced FY 2012-13 arts grants, totaling $6.2 million, to be distributed to arts organizations around the state. Franklin County Arts Council received a grant of $16,574 for its Grassroots Arts Program. Halifax County received 3 grants totaling $32,523 for its Halifax County Arts Council (Grassroots Arts Program; $14,523), HaliwaSaponi Indian Tribe (Traditional Arts Programs in Schools (TAPS); $8,000) and Hollister Elementary School (AIE Residency Level II; $10,000). Nash County Arts Council received a grant of $22,984 for its Grassroots Arts Program $22,984.

 

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DID YOU KNOW?

 

Down East Partnership for Children(DEPC) needs volunteers

 

To become a volunteer a person needs to complete an application, sign a confidentiality form, and then complete a short orientation. This can all be done as one large group, small groups, or on an individual bases.

 

Only certain roles require a background check which DEPC pays for. They have volunteers from age 15 and up.

Long term volunteer work examples are data entry for their family first system (calling families and updating their information), weekly cleaning organization of indoor playspace and/or outdoor learning environment, a book swap coordinator, and administrative type jobs in our different departments.  Along with these long term jobs they have a variety of one time needs that come up weekly for example helping prepare a large mailing.

 

For more information, visit www.depc.org or contact Melissa Lowry at 252-985-4300.

 

Pharmaceutical Manufacturer to Create 200 Jobs in Nash County

State Grant Helps Hospira Modernize, Expand Capabilities in Rocky Mount

 

Gov. Bev Perdue announced that Hospira, a leading provider of injectable medicines and infusion technologies, will modernize and expand the capabilities of its operations in Nash County. The company plans to create 200 additional jobs and make new capital investments for the construction, improvement, upfitting and equipping of existing and new facilities. The capital investment will be at least $85 million over the next three years and could grow to be up to $270 million over the next ten years. The project was made possible in part by a $645,000 grant from the One North Carolina Fund. The state grant will be based on the company investing $85 million over the first three years of the project.  

 

Hospira is the world’s largest generic injectable pharmaceutical manufacturer. The company’s products are used by hospitals, outpatient clinics and other healthcare sites, such as clinics and home-health facilities. The company currently has about 2,400 employees at its Rocky Mount facility.

 

Salaries will vary by job function, with new positions including technical, supervisory, production and support roles. The average annual wage for the new jobs will be $51,780, plus benefits. The Nash County average annual wage is $34,112.

 

The One NC Fund provides financial assistance, through local governments, to attract business projects that will stimulate economic activity and create new jobs in the state. Companies receive no money up front and must meet job creation and investment performance standards to qualify for grant funds. These grants also require and are contingent upon local matches. The economic development agreement from Nash County and the City of Rocky Mount has a value of up to $12.5 million over the next ten years.

 

Through use of the One NC Fund, more than 60,000 jobs and $11 billion in investment have been created since 2001. Other partners that helped with this project include: the N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Community Colleges, Nash County, City of Rocky Mount and the Carolinas Gateway Partnership.

 

(SOURCE: Carolinas Gateway Partnership)

 

 

 

SANDERSON FARMS ANNOUNCES 1,100 NEW JOBS IN NASH COUNTY  

 

In a press release issued by Sanderson Farms Inc. (www.sandersonfarms.com), Chairman and CEO Joe F. Sanderson, Jr. announced that the company will locate a new poultry processing plant and hatchery in Nash County, North Carolina. Sanderson Farms Inc is the third largest poultry producer in the United States with annual sales of more than $1.978 billion. As proposed the facilities will provide 1,100 new jobs and create a $91.4 million capital investment in the local economy.

 

"Sanderson Farms expressed an interest in Nash County as a potential plant location almost two years ago," said Frank Harrison, Chairman of the Carolinas Gateway Partnership, "and we are delighted that this official announcement will finally make this project a reality. The economic impact of this project will bring 2,400 jobs and $5.5 billion over a 10 year period to the Nash County region".

 

The proposed location of the poultry processing plant is a large, industrially zoned 140 acre site near the interchange of East NC Highway 97 and Interstate 95. The proposed hatchery would be located further east near the intersection of East NC Highway 97 and South NC Highway 58.

 

The processing plant and hatchery operation is expected to employ workers from the Nash, Wilson and Edgecombe County area, where the unemployment rate averaged 13.4% in July 2012. Sanderson Farms, Inc. provides its employees with a competitive salary and benefit package.

 

In light of this announcement, Nash County officials will prepare an agreement outlining the employment and investment obligations of Sanderson Farms, Inc. along with any incentives to be offered to the company. Nash County will announce a public hearing date in the near future where citizens can hear a presentation on the proposed agreement and share their comments with the county commissioners.

 

(SOURCE: Carolinas Gateway Partnership)

 

 

LEGISLATIVE RECAP FROM AARP

The 2012 state legislative short session convened on May 16 and adjourned on July 3. A prime purpose of the session was to adjust the second year of the biennial budget approved in 2011. The General Assembly approved a $20.2 billion budget for the 2012-2013 state fiscal year in late June. As she did last year, Governor Beverly Perdue vetoed the budget bill. The legislature overrode her veto, as it also did last year, on July 2. The approved budget did not include an increase in taxes and was $727 million less than the Governor recommended.

This legislative summary will provide an overview of some of the key provisions of the budget bill (House Bill 950) as well as highlights of other key legislation passed in the 2012 session of special note to AARP members. In addition, information on many of the high profile bills passed this session is also included; however, this document does not provide a comprehensive summary of all action taken by the General Assembly in the short session. To find out more details about the work of the legislature in the session, visit the General Assembly website.

Volunteers Advocates Play Critical RoleAARP North Carolina extends a special thanks to our excellent cadre of 117 Key Legislative Contact volunteers from around the state for their work in advocating with the members of the NC General Assembly for our priority issues. Their visits, calls, e-mails, attendance at public hearings and other numerous efforts before and during the legislative session were critical in ensuring that, among other things, the legislature continued to fund existing programs to support older adults in their homes and communities, maintained current funding to support families caring for persons with dementia, and preserved Medicaid services for older and disabled adults. The valuable work of the Key Contacts this year helped to provide a solid foundation for our advocacy work in 2013.

What is Next? Persons elected to serve in the NC Senate and the NC House of Representatives in the general election on November 6 will convene on January 9, 2013 for the legislative long session. Unlike previous years, the legislature will meet solely on that date to elect officers, adopt rules, and otherwise organize the session. The legislature will reconvene on January 30 to begin the session work. AARP North Carolina staff and volunteers look forward to working with new and returning members of the General Assembly on behalf of those issues which impact the 1.1 million state residents who are our members.

 

Budget Bill (House Bill 950) Highlights:

  • Maintains current funding level for the Home and Community Care Block Grant which provides in-home and community based services for older adults.
  • Maintains current funding level for Project CARE (Caregiver Alternatives to Running on Empty), a program which provides support for families caring for persons with Alzheimer’s.
  • Makes no additional cuts to Medicaid optional services for older and disabled adults (except for Medicaid personal care services as noted in next bullet). Optional services include dental care; eye care and eyeglasses; prescription drugs; occupational, physical, and speech therapies; hospice; prosthetics and orthotics; podiatry services; community alternative programs; in-home care services; mental health services; and rehabilitation services.
  • Changes the eligibility criteria for Medicaid personal care services and reduces appropriations by $6 million.
  • Appropriates $50 million to support a new State Transitions to Community Living Program – $10.3 million to be used to facilitate implementation of the plan to transition individuals with severe mental illness who reside in adult care homes to community living arrangements and $39.7 million to provide temporary, short-term assistance to adult care homes as they transition to the Transition to Community Living Plan (pay for monthly stipends to adult care and group homes for residents who are no longer eligible to receive Medicaid-reimbursable personal care services but for whom a community placement has not yet been arranged).
  • Sets aside $100 million in reserve for any potential cost overruns in Medicaid (current year Medicaid shortfall reached approximately $280 million).
  • Provides $212 million to partially fund the projected enrollment growth in the number of people eligible for Medicaid.
  • Anticipates $59 million in savings through the Community Care of North Carolina medical home coordination of care program.
  • Removes the limits placed on therapy services for Medicaid recipients that were imposed last year.
  • Specifies that an increase in a Medicaid recipient’s income due solely to a cost-of-living adjustment to federal Social Security or Railroad Retirement payments shall be disregarded when determining income eligibility for Medicaid.
  • Authorizes a study to examine feasibility of creating a separate Department of Medicaid.
  • Increases funding for Adult Protective Services to $1.34 million (13% increase) through the state’s Social Services Block Grant.
  • Reduces administrative support for the NC Division of Aging and Adult Services available from the state’s Social Services Block Grant by $63,982.
  • Continues funding for the ChecKmeds medication counseling program for seniors ($1.69 million non-recurring) and the Medication Assistance Program which provides free prescriptions to low-income uninsured persons ($1.7 million non-recurring).
  • Provides $2.7 million in federal block grant funds for smoking prevention and cessation programs (was $17.3 million this year).
  • Authorizes the NC Department of Health and Human Services and the NC Department of Transportation Public Transportation Division to develop and issue a request for proposals for the management of non-emergency transportation services for Medicaid recipients (can enter into contract only if cost-effective).
  • Cuts public transportation grants by $1.93 million (cut considered had been as high as $8.69 million).
  • Eliminates the New Starts and Capital Program within the Public Transportation Division of the NC Department of Transportation.
  • Continues cuts to numerous health and human service non-profits initiated in 2011 including funding for NC Senior Games which is now reduced to $121,481 (approximately a 20% reduction and the appropriation becomes non-recurring).
  • Provides $4.89 million to county health departments to start or continue community health and wellness initiatives.
  • Directs the NC Department of Health and Human Services to submit an application to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for a home and community based service program under Medicaid 1915(i) authority for persons typically served in special care and memory care units who meet the criteria for State/County Special Assistance.
  • Authorizes the Division of Public Health to develop a pilot program to enroll individuals receiving services under the Aids Drug Assistance Program into Inclusive Health North Carolina (the state’s program for persons with pre-existing conditions looking for more affordable health coverage).
  • Equalizes the State/County Special Assistance Payments under in-home, adult care home, and rental assistance programs.
  • Provides 1.2 % salary increase for teachers and state employees  and 1% increase for retirees (first raise since 2008) and a one-time additional five days of annual leave credited on July 1, 2012.
  • Transfers the Consumer Protection Division in the NC Department of Justice and Public Safety to be funded through receipt-support.
  • Eliminates $7.9 million in General Fund appropriations to the Housing Trust  Fund by swapping this money out with funds from the National Mortgage Settlement.
  • Caps the gasoline tax at 37.5 cents per gallon (1.4 cents below the current rate).
  • Expands the optional retirement program for University of North Carolina System employees hired on or after January 1, 2013.
  • Includes $5 million in non-recurring dollars to the NC Community College System Office to support the NC Back to Work initiative, a retraining program to prepare North Carolinians facing long-term unemployment for new careers.
  • Does not include funding to compensate living victims of the state’s defunct forced sterilization program.

Highlights of Selected Key Legislation Passed in 2012 Session

Senate Bill 187 — Modifications/2012 Appropriations Act: Makes technical, clarifying, and other modifications to the Budget Bill (House Bill 950) including provisions to prohibit state agencies from using additional funds appropriated in fiscal year 2012-2013 to offset management flexibility reductions, to add a study of the guardianship program within the overall examination of the state’s delivery of mental health services, and to delay the implementation of ferry toll adjustments for fiscal year 2012-2013.

Senate Bill 191 — Local Management Entities Governance: Makes changes in the governance of Local Management Entities (LMEs) with respect to the implementation of statewide expansion of the 1915 (b)/(c) Medicaid waiver.

Senate Bill 347 — Mental Health Crisis Management: Spells out actions considered to be reasonable safety or containment measures and precautions for managing patients pending involuntary commitment placement.

Senate Bill 525 — Critical Access Behavioral Health Agencies (CABHA’s): Spells out services to be provided by a CABHA and staffing requirements.

Senate Bill 655 — Denistry Management Arrangements: Creates a task force to develop recommendations for the N.C. Board of Dental Examiners on how to regulate dental management companies which dentists hire to handle administrative and purchasing functions.

Senate Bill 656 — Right to Choose Physical Therapist: Ensures that patients have the right to choose their physical therapist under their health benefit plans.

Senate Bill 797 — Payment of 2012 Medicaid Costs/Inmate Medical Costs: Among other things, this bill ensures adequate funding (not to exceed $205,500,000) in the state Medicaid program for the 2011-2012 fiscal year.

Senate Bill 798 — Various Emergency Management Changes: Among other things, establishes the Joint Legislative Emergency Management Oversight Committee to examine issues related to emergency management in the state and to make recommendations on ways to promote effective emergency preparedness, management, response, and recovery.

Senate Bill 803 — Retirement Administrative Changes: Makes changes to administrative procedures in the NC Retirement Systems Division, including a clarification on the circumstances under which the Board of Trustees of the Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System may grant a cost of living increase to retirees.

Senate Bill 804 — Retirement Technical Changes: Makes technical changes to statute, including one designed to bring NC retirement law into accordance with federal changes coming from the IRS.

Senate Bill 806 — Modify Mortgage Regulation Funding: Makes changes to the law dealing with the annual assessments of mortgage bankers, mortgage brokers, and mortgage servicers.

Senate Bill 810 — Regulatory Reform Act of 2012: Makes numerous changes to state regulatory provisions.

Senate Bill 815 — Reform Workforce Development: Initiates reform of the workforce development laws of North Carolina, modifies the composition of the NC Commission on Workforce Development, and establishes the Joint Legislative Workforce Development System Reform Committee.

Senate Bill 824 — Expedite Rule Making for Forced Combination: Requires the NC Secretary of Revenue’s interpretation of the law concerning the Secretary’s authority to adjust net income or require a combined return be made through rule making and provides an expedited process for rule making on this issue.

Senate Bill 826 — Revenue Laws Technical, Clarifying and Administrative Changes: Among other things, this bill makes the State Home Foreclosure Prevention Project permanent.

Senate Bill 828 — Unemployment Insurance Changes: Among other provisions, changes the law to continue the three-year look back trigger for extended benefits and further specifies when an individual shall be disqualified for benefits.

Senate Bill 836 — Improve Property Insurance Rate Making: Among other provisions to improve property insurance rate making, this bill requires the NC Rate Bureau and the NC Department of Insurance to study the fairness and efficacy of the current property insurance geographic rate territories.

Senate Bill 841 — Effective Utilization of Program Evaluation Division: Specifies, among other things, that every resolution introduced in the NC General Assembly proposing a study or evaluation by the Program Evaluation Division shall have attached to it at the time of its consideration by the General Assembly an impact statement prepared by the Division.

Senate Bill 869 — Remove Restriction/Firefighter Disability: Removes the requirement that firefighters and rescue squad workers have one year of creditable service in order to qualify for disability retirement benefits under the Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System for injuries incurred in the line of duty.

Senate Resolution 959 — Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day: Expresses support of the NC Senate for the designation of an annual Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day on March 30 of each year.

House Bill 14 — Use Repairs and Renovations Funds for 2011-2012 Medicaid Costs: Authorizes the Director of the Budget to use repairs and renovations funds up to $94,000,000 to ensure adequate funding for the state Medicaid program for the 2011-2012 fiscal year.

House Bill 153 — No Public Retirement for Convicted Felons: Prohibits a person who has been convicted of certain felonies related to employment or holding office from receiving public retirement benefits.

House Bill 237 — 2012 Workers’ Compensation Amendments: Provides that the NC Rate Bureau share with the NC Industrial Commission information on the status of workers’ compensation insurance coverage on employers in the state and makes clarifying, conforming, and other changes related to the workers’ compensation laws of the state.

House Bill 244 — State Health Plan/Add Schools; Whistleblowers: In addition to authorizing two charter schools to elect to participate in the State Health Plan for Teachers and State Employees, the bill provides protections for whistleblowers alleging fraud or other misconduct related to the State Health Plan.

House Bill 457 — Municipal Electric Utilities/Rate Hearings: Stipulates that the Eastern Joint Municipal Power Agency shall hold a public meeting prior to changing rates and the Municipal Electric Utilities that are members of the Eastern Power Agency shall hold a public hearing before changing electric rates.

House Bill 493 — Landlord Tenant Law Changes: Amends the laws related to landlord tenant relationships and establishes a process whereby a landlord may remove from a residential dwelling unit tangible personal property belonging to a deceased tenant after filing an affidavit with the Clerk of Court in the county in which the residential dwelling is located.

House Bill 614 — Enact Volunteer Health Care Services Act: Allows registered sponsoring organizations to arrange for the voluntary provision of health care services in the state, relieves providers of voluntary health care services from additional licensure requirements, and provides limited protection from civil liability to persons providing voluntary health care services in association with sponsoring organizations.

House Bill 707 — Register of Deeds/Directed Trustees/Estates: Eliminates obsolete Registry of Deeds provisions from the General Statutes; amends local agency charges for vital records searches; clarifies the laws governing persons holding the power to direct trustees, trust protectors, and directed trustees and other fiduciaries; makes technical changes in the law governing trusts and decedents’ estates; and authorizes the reviser of statutes to print official comments to the Uniform Trust Code.

House Resolution 939 — Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day: Expresses support of the NC House of Representatives for the designation of an annual Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day on March 30 of each year.

House Bill 843 — Modernize NC Emergency Management Act: Among other things, sets forth the authority and responsibility of the Governor, state agencies, and local governments in prevention of, preparation for, response to, and recovery from natural or man-made emergencies or hostile military or paramilitary action.

House Bill 1025 — Extend Tax Provisions: Extends the sunset on certain tax provisions set to expire this year to January 1, 2014, including the sunset on the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) which provides a refundable tax credit to low-income working North Carolinians and the sunset on the credit for premiums paid on long-term care insurance.

House Joint Resolution 1033 — Honor Veterans: Expresses gratitude to the members of the military for their service and honors the memory of those killed in the line of duty.

House Bill 1055 — Eliminate Local Management Entity (LME) Provider Endorsement: Eliminates provider endorsement functions of LMEs.

House Bill 1066 — Passing Title by Will: Clarifies, modifies, and consolidates the law applicable to the passing of title of interests in real and personal property devised by a will and the rights of lien creditors and purchasers of value.

House Bill 1067 — Co-Owners/Unequal Shares/Simultaneous Death: Conforms the law governing co-owners with right of survivorship under the Simultaneous Death Act to the law governing the holding of unequal shares in a joint tenancy with right of survivorship.

House Bill 1074 — Stop Waste, Fraud, and Abuse in Government Act: Creates “whistleblower” protection for local government employees reporting suspected cases of waste, fraud or abuse. It also empowers the NC Retirement Systems Division to investigate cases of fraud and abuse and makes it a class 1 misdemeanor to purposely defraud the retirement system by keeping a person’s disability benefit after they have died.

House Bill 1081 — Provisional Licensure Changes: Spells out changes pertaining to licensed clinical social workers, clinical addiction specialists, and psychologist.

House Bill 1085 — State Health Plan/Statutory Changes: Amends the definition of a “dependent child” and limits enrollment without a “qualifying event” to the annual enrollment period in order to comply with the Federal Affordable Care Act. It also repeals the long-term care insurance benefit.

House Resolution 1175 — Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Awareness: Honors the COPD Coalition of North Carolina and expresses appreciation for the organization’s commitment to raising awareness of the disease.

House Bill 1181 — Study Municipal Local Option Sales Tax: Authorizes the Revenue Laws Study Committee to study whether municipalities should have the authority to levy a local option sales tax for beach nourishment and to study the taxation and valuation of leasehold interests in exempt real property.

(SOURCE: AARP)

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LEGISLATIVE NEWS FROM THE “INTERIM” (i.e. Time between sessions)

 

The General Assembly continues to stay busy, even when we are not in session. There are a number of studies, task forces and interim committees that work in between our regular sessions. This week, we wanted to share some information with you about some of the work going on in the interim concerning issues of interest to some of our older residents. I hope you will find it helpful.

 

Fraud

The Consumer Protection Division of the Department of Justice has been directed to form the Task Force on Fraud Against Older Adults. The law (SB 449) requires the task force to examine issues including:

 

·        Identifying, clarifying, and strengthening laws to provide older adults a broader system of protection against fraud and abuse.

·        Establishing a statewide system to enable reporting on incidents of fraud and mistreatment of older adults.

·        Identifying opportunities for partnership among the Banking Commission, the financial management industry, and law enforcement agencies to prevent fraud against older adults.

·        Granting the Attorney General authority to initiate prosecutions for fraud against older adults.

 

A final report from the Task Force to the North Carolina Study Commission on Aging is due by October 1.

 

Mental Health

The Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Health and Human Services will appoint a subcommittee to examine the state’s delivery of mental health services. The subcommittee must consider:

 

·        The state’s progress in delivering mental health services in integrated settings.

·        The state’s capacity to meet growing mental health needs.

·        The process for determining catchment areas for psychiatric hospitals including managed care organization groupings and alternatives that would increase efficiency and equity.

·        The impact of implementing the 1915(b)/(c) waiver and other mental health reforms on guardianship roles, responsibilities, relationships, and recommended legislation to transfer State Mental Health/Developmental Disabilities/Substance Abuse Services guardianship responsibilities to county departments of social services.

 

The subcommittee will report its findings to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Health and Human Services by January 15.

 

 

Medicaid

The staff of the General Assembly has been asked to study the feasibility of creating a separate Department of Medicaid.  A joint recommendation will be made to the 2013 Regular Session of the General Assembly no later than February 5, and will include a review of the administration of other state Medicaid programs; an analysis of benefits and disadvantages to creating a Department of Medicaid; any adverse impact a Department of Medicaid may have on the administration of other agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services; and an identification of various Medicaid organizational structures, including any associated costs and savings.

 

 

Housing

The Blue Ribbon Commission on Transitions to Community Living will examine the state’s system of community housing and community supports for people with severe mental illness, severe and persistent mental illness, and intellectual and developmental disabilities. The commission will be composed of 32 members. The Commission must appoint a Subcommittee on Housing and a Subcommittee on Adult Care Homes, each composed of 15 members.  Reporting requirements include an interim report by October 1, 2012 and a final plan to the General Assembly no later than February 1, 2013. 

 

 

Economic Development

Southern Business & Development, a leading publication covering and promoting economic development in the American South, announced that North Carolina has been named the “2012 State of the Year.”  North Carolina is being honored as State of the Year based on its performance in 2011.  North Carolina also received this accolade in 2005 and 2006. Southern Business & Development ranks states based on each project announced with a minimum of 200 jobs and/or $30 million investment.  In 2011, North Carolina was successful in landing 89 projects that met or exceeded the publication’s threshold, more than any other state. In addition to the state’s top ranking, Charlotte was named the 2012 Major Market of the Year and Greensboro-High Point garnered the top spot in the Mid-Market category.

 

 

Death

Rep. Larry Brown, a former mayor of Kernersville for eight years, died Thursday. Brown was elected to the House of Representatives in 2005 and was finishing out his final term after losing a primary election. He was a real estate company owner and retired postmaster. He represented parts of Forsyth and Davidson counties.

 

THANK YOU FROM…

·       The Opportunities Industrialization Center would like to thank Representative Bryant for her presence and support of their National Health Center Week activities. They believe that if we work together to uplift all of our community, our economy and quality of life will increase for all.

·       The staff and student of Scotland Neck Education & Recreation Foundation would like to give thanks to Rep. Bryant for taking the time out to stop by and bring school supplies for the children. The students were excited about their gifts.

 

HEAR AND SEE LEGISLATURE LIVE DAILY

 

You don’t have to miss the Legislative Session. WRAL will live stream legislative sessions daily on their website.     www. wral.com.  Also, please remember that you can listen to some committee meetings and press conferences on the General Assembly’s website at www.ncleg.net. Once on the site, select "Audio," and then make your selection – House Chamber, Senate Chamber, Appropriations Committee Room or Press Conference Room.  You can also view the bills I sponsor and co-sponsor from this website address. 

 

 

 

 

 

Contact:  Representative Angela R. Bryant, House of Representatives, NC House District 7

North Carolina General Assembly • 542 Legislative Office Building • 300 N. Salisbury Street, Raleigh, NC  27603 919-733-5878-Phone • 919-754-3289-FAX • Angela.Bryant@ncleg.net

or Karon Hardy, Legislative Assistant at bryantla@ncleg.net

 

 

 

         

 

2012 DNC Snapshot Just In Case You Missed It

 

2012 DNC HIGHLIGHTS

 

The 2012 Democratic National Convention has come to a close and here are some of the week’s highlights for you to relive the convention. Be sure to visit DemConvention.com to see all of the week’s news, including videos, pictures, blog posts and the speech transcripts.

 

DAILY SNAPSHOT
President Obama is joined on stage by his family following his acceptance speech.
President Obama is joined on stage by his family following his acceptance speech.
 

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

 

President Obama Rallies America to Move ‘Forward’. In accepting the Democratic Party nomination for reelection to the Presidency of the United States, President Obama made an honest and compelling argument for not only the successes of his first term, but the promise of his second.

 

Joe Biden: Never Bet Against the American People. Vice President Joe Biden gave a passionate and heart felt speech to a packed arena on the final night of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.

 

42nd President Bill Clinton Delivers Home Run Endorsement of President Obama. Bill Clinton took the stage to thunderous applause as he delivered a powerful speech that outlined the reasons Americans should vote for President Obama.

 

Elizabeth Warren: "We Run This Country for the People". Elizabeth Warren brought attendees to their feet as she described President Obama’s work for the middle class and creating opportunities for all Americans.

 

First Lady Delivers Personal and Emotive Speech. First Lady Michelle Obama delivered an impassioned, personal speech to close out the Democratic National Convention’s first evening Tuesday night.

 

Mayor Julián Castro makes history. San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro made history by becoming the first Latino to deliver the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention.

 

Democratic Women Leaders: "Women will lead us to victory". House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, joined by other Democratic women of the House of Representatives, led the call Tuesday night for women across the nation to join President Barack Obama in moving America forward.

 

Convention Kicks Off with CarolinaFest. Thousands of people filled uptown Charlotte on Labor Day for CarolinaFest, a free, family-friendly event that marked the start of the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

 

 

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Aged black leaders in Raleigh lack heirs apparent – News & Observer

RALEIGH — ******

CORRECTION

A story in the City & State section Thursday incorrectly identified state Rep. Ty Harrell’s home. He lives in Raleigh.

******

Response: This is something to think about. I have talked about this over the years. They always talking about grooming some young folks to get involved but it has not happened since I have been engaged in politics since the late 80’s. Young folks have had to fight the old guards for their positions. Not only is this true in politics but also in organizations as well. Sad!

Commissioner Harold Webb turns 83 in April, making him Wake County’s oldest elected politician.

State Sen. Vernon Malone is inching into his late 70s.

State Rep. Dan Blue is a comparative youngster at 58, but his tenure in the Capitol dates back to the early 1980s.

All three politicians represent Southeast Raleigh, but the city’s black community wonders when a younger generation will step up. Among white leaders in the legislature and on local governing boards, it’s much easier to find people in their 40s and early 50s. (More)

Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan & Kevin McCarthy: Plot To Sabotage US Economy with Frank Luntz – Daily Kos

  On January 20, 2009 Republican Leaders in Congress literally plotted to sabotage and undermine U.S. Economy during President Obama’s Inauguration. 

     In Robert Draper’s book, "Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives" Draper wrote that during a four hour, "invitation only" meeting with GOP Hate-Propaganda Minister, Frank Luntz, the below listed Senior GOP Law Writers literally plotted to sabotage, undermine and destroy America’s Economy. (More)

Read more:

"Ignant Racist Republicans" 

Chris Wallace falsely claims Obama had filibuster-proof majority for 2 years – The Raw Story