What's Happening

Economy

WRAL: Long-standing, unmet priorities are even more critical now

By Alanna Joyner / May 20, 2020

Two weeks after meeting to approve a $1.6 billion package that distributed COVID-19 funds from Washington, the North Carolina General Assembly resumed its annual session on Monday.  The N.C. Senate unveiled spending priorities on Tuesday for the coming fiscal year, rolling out more than 18 separate bills. The N.C. House has yet to lay out…

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NC legislature passes COVID-19 relief, without expanding jobless benefits or Medicaid

By Alanna Joyner / May 4, 2020

On May 2, the North Carolina General Assembly approved a $1.57 million COVID-19 relief package. Votes in both the House and the Senate during the Saturday session were unanimous, marking the legislature’s first response to the pandemic.  The $1.57 billion package contains funding for education, health care, small business loans, food banks, medical research, testing…

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News & Observer: The legislature needs to think big on how to respond to COVID-19

By Alanna Joyner / April 27, 2020

The North Carolina General Assembly convenes on Tuesday for its short session — the focus is only on temporary and immediate fixes in response to the current public health crisis. Several bills and summaries that the General Assembly will consider during the short session this week, include small business loans, resources for remote teaching, increased…

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200,000 NC residents have filed for unemployment benefits. Here’s how to apply.

By Alanna Joyner / March 27, 2020

Since March 16, North Carolina Division of Employment Security has reported over  200,000 new unemployment claims, of which applicants have filed their job loss due to COVID-19’s impact on their employment. North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper’s executive order on March 17, expanded access to unemployment benefits in an effort to minimize the economic impact of…

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Appalachian Voices: NC groups call for prohibition of all utility shut-offs in state due to covid-19

By Alanna Joyner / March 24, 2020

Over 30 North Carolina organizations are calling for the suspension of all utility shut-offs across the state during the coronavirus outbreak. In a letter addressed to the NC Utilities Commission, Governor Roy Cooper and key officials, the groups are urging for an immediate suspension of service disconnections and late payment fees for customers.  The letter…

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Senate passes ‘Families First Coronavirus Response Act’

By Alanna Joyner / March 23, 2020

A second coronavirus emergency aid package came into law last week, named the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The latest package includes a federal emergency paid-leave benefits program, free COVID-19 testing for the public and expanded unemployment benefits. The first emergency bill allocated over $8 billion for coronavirus prevention, preparation, and response efforts across the…

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Need food during your coronavirus quarantine? NC farmers want to provide it.

By Alanna Joyner / March 18, 2020

North Carolina farmers in several counties across the state are providing communities with access to fresh produce in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. With over 230 farmers markets and roadside stands in North Carolina, residents will be able to get local fresh food in their communities, rather than at grocery stores.  From North Carolina…

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Duke Energy still seeks rate hikes even as profits are up

By Alanna Joyner / February 18, 2020

Duke Energy turned a profit of $660 million for the last three months of 2019, up 42% from a year ago. This comes after Duke Energy’s proposed rate hike request to raise over $123 MILLION on the backs of rate-payers to pay for their toxic coal ash clean up.  From WFAE: Duke CEO Lynn Good…

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Emotions run high at a public hearing over Duke Energy rate hike request

By admin / February 3, 2020

Last Friday marked the first of several public hearings in Alamance County over the potential Duke Energy rate hike request. Numerous residents spoke out against the rate increase — emphasizing the financial hardships that Duke Energy’s rate increase would cause. If the rate hike request is allowed, ratepayers’ bills would go up by 6.8 percent…

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Winston-Salem Journal: Duke Energy is seeking rate hike costing the average residential customer $97 per year. Here’s how you can weigh in

By admin / January 27, 2020

Duke Energy is asking the N.C. Utilities Commission to raise electricity rates on its customers by an average of $8 / month for residents or almost $100 / year to pay for coal ash clean-up. The N.C. The Utilities Commission will hold public hearings in Alamance County on Wednesday and Charlotte on Thursday to take…

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