Raleigh, N.C. — The new year got off to a fast start, with Gov. Roy Cooper and several other Council of State members taking their oaths of office early, which proved to be a good idea once a winter storm scrambled plans for the formal inauguration ceremony.
In between his swearing in and overseeing the state's response to the storm, Cooper started naming some of his cabinet nominees and other members of his senior staff, and he announced that he plans to expand the Medicaid program without the help of state lawmakers, who blocked expansion several years ago, by working with hospitals across North Carolina to help fund it.
Cooper's lawyers also were in court, winning an injunction against a new law the overhauls the structure of state and county elections boards until the courts can decide if the changes are legal. A separate law that the General Assembly passed in the waning days of 2016 also is on hold after the State Board of Education challenged shifting various powers from the board to the elected state superintendent of public instruction.