#ncga: Leadership, lobbyists conspiring to topple Folwell?

I’ve always suspected that what WE want runs a distant second to what the deep-pocketed Raleigh lobbyists want.  This kerfuffle between the hospital lobby and treasurer Dale Folwell over reforming the state health plan is starting to confirm those suspicions. We told you earlier about a bill being circulated among the House majority to limit Folwell’s power regarding the management of the state health plan. The bill prevents Folwell from making any changes  to the standard operating procedure regarding the plan until the end of 2021.  It also forms a study committee that will issue a report on the “sustainability”…

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#ncga: The Great Timmy Telephone Tap Terror

You know life is not so going so well when people are scared to talk to you for fear of ending up part of a criminal investigation. Taking a page from John  Hood — The great English philosopher Ray Davies once opined that “Paranoia will destroy ya.” Confession:  I haven’t set foot in the legislative building since about 1995. ( I met with then-speaker Harold Brubaker who took me onto the House floor for a quick tour.) Despite my long absence from that building, I think I’ve established that I’m living rent-free in a lot of the heads that work and…

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ASK and ye shall RECEIVE …

We raised questions earlier about why election day shenanigans in Bladen County were being scrutinized, but monkey business across the border in Robeson County has not.  According to reports in the national media, THAT may be changing: North Carolina election officials are investigating possible irregularities with absentee ballots in the state’s 9th Congressional District, refusing to certify the race weeks after Election Day. Unofficial results show Mark Harris, a Republican, defeating Democrat Dan McCready by 905 votes out of 282,717 cast. At a Tuesday meeting to certify statewide election results, the state Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement declined to…

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#ncga: Gun Lobby targets Bill Rabon

Grass Roots North Carolina, one of the more influential Second Amendment groups in the state, is baring its fangs and showing its claws at senator Bill Rabon (R-Brunswick), chairman of the powerful Senate Rules Committee: […] It’s a sad day in Raleigh when politicians who claim to be pro-gun act as though they are anything but. It’s an even sadder day when an honest citizen, petitioning her Representatives, is driven to tears after telling the Senator that she would relay his position on HB-746 (Permitless Concealed Carry and more) to other gun rights voters. Yet, that is exactly what happened…

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The pot calling the kettle CORRUPT

Nationwide, Democrats have had some success in snatching election victories away from Republicans AFTER election day.  Now, it looks like they might be giving it a try on a North Carolina congressional race: The 9th Congressional District race between Republican Mark Harris and Democrat Dan McCready is not over. The State Board of Elections Tuesday declined to certify the results of the race, even though all counties have certified their votes and Harris is ahead by 905 votes. The vice chair of the board, Joshua Malcolm, said he would no longer “turn a blind eye” to what he called “unfortunate…

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Ch-Ch-Ch-Chaaaaaaaaanges (at the top of NCGOP?)

It’s not unusual for heads to roll in an organization after an abysmal performance.  Sports teams.  political campaigns.  corporations.  It happens a lot. Conservatives have been griping, with good reason, for some time about the management of the North Carolina Republican Party.  Until this year. their complaints were ignored by the country-clubbers who have a stranglehold on the party machinery. And then November happened.  Mecklenburg and Wake counties — where most of those country clubbers reside — pretty much lost ALL of their elected Republican representation.  Wheels apparently started turning.  Light bulbs went off over certain heads.  (*Maybe those wingnuts…

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Wake County RoD: Riddick STILL trying to pick her victim’s pockets

Former Wake County Register of Deeds Laura Riddick, currently serving time for embezzlement, has filed suit to regain her state pension.  State law frowns upon stealing from the taxpayers, and allows for seizure of any pension benefits accrued during the time said crime was committed. Charles Gilliam, the current county Register of Deeds, had a few things to say about inmate Riddick’s legal maneuvering: Laura Riddick, retrospectively dissatisfied with the light penalty which she received three months ago in a plea bargain, is now reaching out of the confines of the prison cell to continue to pick the pockets of…

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#ncga: Et tu, Josh? (Ralph ???)

As we predicted, a bill has surfaced seeking to put the kibosh on state treasurer Dale Folwell’s efforts to get the costs of the state health plan under control.  The travails and woes of the plan — it’s set to run out of  money in 2023 — will end up hitting the wallets of ALL taxpayers, not just state employees.  All Folwell is seeking to do is find out WHAT specifically the state owned hospital (UNC) is billing the state and its employees for health care delivery. We’ve currently got one arm of state government (UNC Hospitals)  keeping secrets from…

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Politician convicted of embezzlement sues to keep her state pension

Talk about GREAT BIG ONES: Laura Riddick, the former Wake County Register of Deeds who pleaded guilty to stealing more than $926,000 while in office, is suing North Carolina to keep her pension. The state, her attorney argues, “exceeded its authority” and acted in error when it ordered $126,290.28 in pension payments since her retirement March 31, 2017, be repaid to the state, according to a court petition. Despite pleading guilty to six counts of embezzlement on Aug. 24, Riddick was still able to receive $89,000 a year from the state’s pension system. Shortly afterward, State Treasurer Dale Folwell said…

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Hospital lobby trolling Jones St. seeking to rein in Folwell’s transparency crusade?

BusinessNC had an item about that.  I’ve been hearing rumblings about it across our fair state capital. As state treasurer, Dale Folwell (R) is responsible for the overall management of the state employees health plan.  Folwell has been aggressively trying to get the health plan in order — pulling it back from that cliff known as insolvency,  and trying to cut costs to the benefit of state employees AND taxpayers.   His crusade has led him to a head-on collision with the hospital lobby — one of the more influential roaming the halls of power in Raleigh.  Political pressure is…

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