Opinion Roundup: July 14, 2016 -- Schools, police cams, jobs talk, health care

Posted July 14

McCrory should veto HB 1080 (Greensboro News & Record column) -- The Guilford County Board of Education encourages Gov. Pat McCrory to veto the Achievement School District bill (HB 1080) when it reaches his desk.

The problem with the new police body camera law (Charlotte Agenda column) -- North Carolina has just passed another law that could have a significantly negative effect on the state. And while it is not as comprehensive in its destruction as HB 2, it is just as much in need of repeal. According the ACLU of North Carolina, HB 972 “allows law enforcement agencies to keep officer worn body camera footage from the public unless ordered to release the footage by a court.” It creates extra hurdles around who can obtain the footage, while also potentially requiring people to use time and money to work through court bureaucracy for the possibility to obtain it.

McCrory or Cooper: who is telling the whole story on N.C. jobs (Charlotte Observer) – North Carolina’s economy isn’t as robust as Team McCrory would have you think, but it’s not as anemic as Team Cooper wants you to believe. … We need less political blame-gaming and more focus on retraining worker for the fast-changing digital economy. McCrory’s spoken of that need, and Cooper made it a key plank in his jobs plan.

Coverage gap hurts working families (Rocky Mount Telegram) -- Many Republicans oppose the expansion of Medicaid largely because of philosophical objections to the Affordable Care Act. While they cling steadfastly to partisan principles, too many families in the Twin Counties are denied basic health care.

Behavioral health care organization hitting its stride (Greenville Daily Reflector) -- The North Carolina Legislature, Department of Health and Human Services and Gov. Pat McCrory can learn what efficient, cost-effective managed care for people with behavioral and intellectual disabilities, mental health and substance use problems looks like from the example set by Greenville-based Trillium Health Resources.

N.C. Constitution’s green guarantee (Southeast Energy News column) - -North Carolina lawmakers are disobeying the state's Constitution by hindering development of solar and wind energy.

Jones Street Shuffle (Greensboro News & Record) -- If you like the Electric Slide, you’re gonna love the Jones Street Shuffle. Named for the address of the State Legislative Building, here’s how the latest craze in line dancing goes: You take one step forward and two back. Next, you jump three times, bow politely to Duke Energy and spin until you’re dizzy. Then you stick your head in the sand. Boogie woogie woogie. This seems to be the preferred approach among state lawmakers, who huffed and puffed about getting tough on Duke Energy following a disastrous coal ash spill in 2014 from a shuttered power plant into the Dan River. And then went soft on the giant utility during this year’s legislative short session.

Addiction recovery programs need more support (Fayetteville Observer) -- With opioid abuse, as with so many of our social problems, prevention is our most important weapon. We're not sure if an ounce of it is worth a pound of cure, but it should be easier to prevent addiction than to reverse it.

Whitewater center needs better regulation (Winston-Salem Journal) -- The recent death of a teenager from a brain infection that was in all likelihood contracted at the U.S. National Whitewater Center in Charlotte was tragic. Gov. Pat McCrory is right to press for more oversight of the center.


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