Monthly Archives: June 2016

Legislative Update #8 – budget, HB 2, TABOR, insensitive clod

Update on reconciling NC’s House and Senate Budgets, HB 2, and status of 2 proposed changes to NC’s Constitution – more concealed weapon carry rather than less in NC, and drastic tax cuts and capping the state income taxes (TABOR).

Read more at North_Carolina_NOW_Legislative_Update_8.18_June_2016

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NC NOW May to July newsletter available online!

There is a lot going on with the fallout from the law known as HB 2 continuing to batter NC, the second primary that was Jun 7, the NCGA trying to change so much during the short session, protests at the legislature, continued stonewalling of African American women for federal positions (by Senator Richard Burr), teachers in the streets! Read about some of it in the NC NOW newsletter May-June 2016.

img_3013-receptionwithcindytpats-judylotas.emmedPhoto credit: Judy Lotas

The newsletter mentions to tragic mass shooting that happened at a gay nightclub at 2am on June 12, 2016, in Orlando, FL. A gunman “carried out the worst mass shooting in United States history, leaving 50 people dead and 53 wounded.” It does not include the Charleston 9 hate crime shooting that was the following week (after the newsletter was published). On Jun 18, 2016, nine people were murdered at a historic African-American Church in Charleston, South Carolina, where they were doing bible study. The victims included the female pastor and a Democratic Senator, also female. These two hate crimes happened within a week of each other, both in the Southeastern US.

Also read about how you can get involved. Note that chapter meetings are listed on front page of the newsletter.

Special treat: the Wisdom from the Internet on page 5.

Cities For CEDAW Coalition Meets with LA CEDAW Prime

NC NOW is part of NC’s Cities For CEDAW (Convention for Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women) coalition. The coalition meets monthly in Raleigh. Read more about Cities for CEDAW (C4C) at “What do you know about CEDAW? How can it help you?” 8/22/15.

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On June 16, the coalition met from 6pm to 8:20pm. From 7pm on, we had a conference call with Araceli Campos from Los Angeles to learn more about LA’s Cities for CEDAW program. Campos walked us through a powerpoint presentation she had sent.

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Give teacher raises with one hand, but with the other hand..

The Senate and House Budgets both give teachers modest pay raises, but continue to ignore most other school staff. Instead of hiring back the over 3000 TAs they forced schools to drop in 2013, they are proposing ways to ‘help’ after a problem has been manifested with “literacy coaches.” More at “Proposed House education budget cuts $27 million for reducing first-grade class sizes, reallocates most to literacy coaches.”  At the same time, the NCGA plans to take even more money from public education.

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Teachers: Public school system in crisis. STOP. Send money! STOP.

Educators and advocates in red are getting the word out in multiple ways about the state of public education in  NC. 

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People really care about public schools! Photo credit: Yevonne Brannon

The 2 day teacher trek

More than 50 teachers, parents and advocates marched 23 miles from Durham to the Capitol to bring attention to the needs of their students June 14 and 15, 2016. The 2 day teacher trek was previewed by CBS News affiliate WCNC on 5/28/16 in “Teachers plan 20 mile march to Raleigh for better school conditions.” Millbrook Elementary School teacher Kristen Beller said “[W]e know the reason our schools are not performing as high as they’re expected to is they’ve been stripped of resources.” What does she mean? Books! Pencils! Paper! Teacher Assistants! Support staff! Teachers have to buy  some of these basics themselves. On the other hand, Beller said the classroom has become a safe haven for some of the lower income students. “We need more resources just to keep these children clean and fed.”

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Legislative Update #7, options for HB 2 now

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NC NOW’s Legislative Update #7 for the Short Session

11 June 2016

The House failed to concur with the Senate budget on Thursday (06/08/2016); therefore, a conference committee will be appointed with representatives from both the House and the Senate to negotiate a final budget.  The negotiations will be conducted behind closed doors, but there will be rumors and leaks to indicate—accurately or inaccurately—how the negotiations are progressing.

Rumors are swirling that the House and Senate are close to a deal on HB2—but there is no agreement on what could be in the deal.  The Republicans are caught between the religious right—who wants them to do nothing—and business interests—who want them to make it all go away.  There are a lot of alternatives available:

(1)    Do nothing and let the courts handle the matter.  This would make the religious right happy.

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Teachers and Public Education further hurt by NC budget proposals

“Instead of funding desperately needed 2 percent raises for state employees and a cost-of-living increase for retirees, the NC Senate budget continues diverting $582 million to a rainy day fund, which is too much money considering we are starving our public schools.”

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Also, the NC Senate budget diverts more money for the voucher program and allows the funding to increase by $10 million each year through 2027. This means by 2027 the program would be receiving $145 million (adding $120 million to what they have already allocated to private schools via vouchers).  More at “NC Senate Budget Would Dramatically Increase School Vouchers,” (WFAE, 6/1/16).

This shows where the NC Senate’s values are when it comes to public education.

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CPC wants to move right next to women’s/abortion clinic in Raleigh

There is a big rezone case going on in West Raleigh – a Crisis Pregnancy Center (CPC) wants to rezone the house right next to an abortion clinic on Jones Franklin Rd in Raleigh. At this time, they claim they plan to use the building of the house, but to completely redesign the yard for parking, etc. The case, Z-7-16, passed the zoning commission and goes to the Raleigh City Council on Tuesday, Jun 21, 2016, at 2pm. The Raleigh NOW president is going and plans to speak, based on experience with clinic defense and also issues and workarounds with rezones. Would love to have other pro-choice and concerned citizens supporting the clinic and many concerned neighbors.

E.L. Sanders lives in that neighborhood and has been writing letters to the editor (ltes) and organizing to help the clinic and her neighborhood. See “E.L. Sanders: Harassment not needed at clinic,” News and Observer, 5/6/16.

This is what the clinic and neighbors don’t want!  Harassment. Dangerous access from next door. Doctors and staff in more danger of attacks.

ABORTIONcounterprotest.madelynnescales.universitystarProtest and counterprotest.  Photo Credit: University Star

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