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A prudent education budget — 3-20-17

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FERREL GILLORY Guest Columnist The day after Gov. Roy Cooper released his proposed state budget, a public radio report portrayed his role in the appropriations process as “largely symbolic.” It is that, and more, particularly with regard to his education agenda. One of the long-standing duties of North Carolina governors…

Obituaries — 3-17-17

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Benedict John Pepitone Benedict John Pepitone, 90, of Denver, (formerly of Warsaw, Indiana) passed away on March 13, 2017 in the Marian Center of Sacred Heart Convent, Belmont. Born on February 4, 1927 in Brooklyn, NY, he was the son of the late Benedicto and Lillian (nee Lambert). Mr. Pepitone served…

GUEST VIEW — Legislators and lobbyists

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State legislators in North Carolina are paid less than $14,000 a year, so some of them trade their experience for more lucrative opportunities as lobbyists. Not so fast, says a bipartisan bill introduced in the House by Rep. John Faircloth of High Point and others. It would double the time,…

A magazine ranked all 50 states. How did North Carolina do?

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ROB CHRISTENSEN Syndicated Columnist North Carolina remains among the leaders in the South when it comes to quality of life, health, education, the economy and other important measures, according to a new in-depth 50-state survey. The Tar Heel State still has many problems, ranging from a significant number of people…

Cooper is in weaker position

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JOHN HOOD Syndicated Columnist Newly elected Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper gave his first State of the State address on March 13. The longtime leader of the North Carolina Senate, Phil Berger, gave the Republican response. Both men were clear and confident in their speeches, which ought to tell you something…

GUEST VIEW — Cooper’s plan for education

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“You’re doing the Lord’s work,” Gov. Roy Cooper said — not at a religious revival but to staff members at the Guilford Child Development Center in Greensboro Thursday afternoon. The soft-spoken governor isn’t known for preaching, but he is thumping a big budget increase for education in his first proposed…

HAAG: Rep. Jason Saine is pushing for new taxes

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NIC HAAG Guest Columnist It turns out our very own representative to the General Assembly has been pushing a bill, HB 279, that would require folks running fantasy sports leagues, of any size, to pay a fee to the state to the tune of $2,500 to $10,000, plus a share…

Political ads remain key tool

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JOHN HOOD Syndicated Columnist Despite being vastly outspent by the campaign and supporters of Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump won the 2016 election. Some are suggesting that the outcome has transformed the practice of American politics in fundamental ways — and that the television ad, in particular, has outlived its usefulness.…

Preserve craft beer

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PAUL T. O’CONNOR Syndicated Columnist I love beer, especially craft beer, and from the look of things about 5 p.m. most days so do many other North Carolinians. But as I enjoy my IPAs, I’m concerned that the big beer companies will someday crush small breweries, just as they did…

OUR VIEW — Officers carrying Narcan save lives

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Lincolnton Police Department officers now have another tool in their arsenal that may one day save someone’s life. Narcan is a drug that stops the effects of an overdose of heroin or other opioid-based narcotics. Should officers come into contact with someone suffering from a potentially fatal overdose, they will…