In their recent staff editorial, the editorial board of the News & Observer hit the gerrymandering nail on the head. Included is this reference to perhaps the wisest grandmother of nonpartisan redistricting, the Iowa method: “One better approach to redistricting is found in Iowa, where partisanship has been drained out of the process almost entirely. Iowa’s legislative and congressional districts are drawn by a nonpartisan state agency without regard to voter registration data or previous election results. The legislature has up to three opportunities to approve… Continue Reading »
As reported October 5 by Steve DeVane in the Fayetteville Observer, tests are to be expanded in the area of the Bladen County Chemours facility where high levels of “GenX” (used to make nonstick coatings on cookware) have been discovered. According to the article, around 150 people attended a meeting Thursday with Sheila Holman, assistant secretary of the NC Department of Environmental Quality, to discuss questions concerning the chemical release and its potential effects. Meanwhile, in Raleigh, the NC General Assembly overrode Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of HB-56,… Continue Reading »
The 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline, planned to carry fracked gas through West Virginia, Virginia, and eastern North Carolina, is knocking at the door of NCDEQ for a necessary water quality permit. Environmental activists are knocking, too — at least metaphorically. They have been staging a protest in front of the department’s office, with several participants holding a water-only fast as the day of permit reckoning approaches. See a report on the climate activists and the project in the September 13 Indy Week: “N.C. Climate Activists Hold… Continue Reading »
The rules for North Carolina’s critical, court-ordered redistricting were announced yesterday with a promise by Rep. David Lewis (R-Harnett County) that the process “will be an inherently political thing.” The rules include protecting incumbents, which Democratic Minority Leader Rep. Darren Jackson (D-Wake County) called “ridiculous,” noting that “We will protect the incumbents elected using unconstitutional maps. See the full News & Observer report by Will Doran.
Gov. Roy Cooper announced on Tuesday that the NC Department of Environmental Quality will deny a permit that would allow the discharge of the “GenX” chemical compound into the Cape Fear River. Cooper said the state will seek help from the Centers for Disease Control and the Environmental Protection Agency regarding risk determination involved. The river is the source of drinking water for more than 200,000 people in Pender, Brunswick and New Hanover counties. A public forum is planned for tonight on the issue at… Continue Reading »
Family land, cultural heritage, energy plans, environmental decisions are embroiled in the pending decision regarding the Atlantic Coast Pipeline’s proposed transmission line in Eastern NC. Reporter Sam Killenberg of the News & Observer spells it out in today’s business article: “Debate Rages as Atlantic Coast Pipeline Nears Construction.”