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The state’s stance on solar energy and jobs

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Politicians in North Carolina, as do politicians everywhere, talk about the importance of creating and retaining jobs. Evidently a majority of North Carolina legislators don’t mean it when those jobs are in renewable energy. North Carolina provides 35 percent in tax credits up to a $2.5 million cap for major…

Time to listen to the Pope on death penalty

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PATRICK GANNON Syndicated Columnist When Pope Francis addressed Congress last week, one of the loudest and longest rounds of applause came after he said the Golden Rule reminds us of the responsibility to protect and defend human life at the early stage of development. But the pope then said he…

Holding bureaucrats accountable for failures

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RICHARD BURR Guest Columnist This week, when I testify along with retired Marine Master Sergeant Jerry Ensminger about the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) response to the Camp Lejeune (NC) water contamination, I will once again tell the American people of the hardships these veterans and their families have suffered,…

OUR VIEW — Boehner makes the right move

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John Boehner’s upcoming exit from Congress and his post as Speaker of the House should be a lesson to other congressmen in the Republican leadership — the status quo is no longer sufficient. Boehner’s problem was that, during his quarter-century career in politics, he exemplified the Republican status quo, which…

Winners of the House budget debate

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PATRICK GANNON Syndicated Columnist On last week’s Domecast, the state government podcast of the News & Observer and the Insider, we asked legislators who they believed made the best cases for and against the $21.7 billion state budget during the House debate last week. Based on their answers, we determined…

Faking people out at the Fed

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ED FEULNER Guest Columnist Frustrated voters sometimes denounce their representatives as “good for nothing,” but are they being fair? Consider the budget gimmicks some politicians come up with. When it comes to fiscal gymnastics, who can deny their creativity? Case in point: a plan to fund the mismanaged Highway Trust…

Our View — The press shouldn’t pander

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That institutions of higher education function as a repository for the worst kinds of neoliberal progressivism is practically taken as a given. In recent months, stories have been reported about universities barring the use of gender-specific words and terms (like he, she, him and her) and professors being required to…

A case for the UDO

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CHRISTINE POINSETTE Guest Columnist A very unusual rezoning was filed in August. The residents of the Forest Oaks subdivision, located in Denver, filed for a Zoning Map Amendment to change not their property, but the property of their neighbor, Universal Rubber. And, although both the Planning Board and the County…

Reader’s Forum: Support for law enforcement — 9-25-15

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Support for law enforcement In light of all the negative press concerning law enforcement recently, I feel compelled to share what I know to be excellent law enforcement in both Lincolnton and Lincoln County. During my tenure as mayor I have had the opportunity to ride with local law enforcement…

State initiates building boom

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JOHN HOOD Syndicated Columnist As a longtime observer of the North Carolina legislature, I have a pet peeve: lawmakers, lobbyists, and reporters alike focus too much attention on the General Fund of the state budget, those expenditures funded largely by state taxes on incomes and retail sales. The General Fund…