Opinion Roundup: Prison safety, state of the union react,will Duke's tax break be consumers' gain? And more

Friday, Feb. 2, 2018 -- A round up of opinion, commentary and analysis: More follows on the State of the Union, prison administration, focus on GenX pollution,federal tax break maybe a gain for electric consumers and the fight against offshore drilling.

Posted Updated
Cooper signs law preventing drones near prisons, state facilities
Friday, Feb. 2, 2018 -- A round up of opinion, commentary and analysis: More follows on the State of the Union, prison administration, focus on GenX pollution,federal tax break maybe a gain for electric consumers and the fight against offshore drilling.
JEFF HAMPTON: N.C. prison leaders on leave following scathing federal report (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot analysis) -- North Carolina Rep. Bob Steinburg, R-Chowan says more upper level prison officials should face consequences.
Federal civil rights commission holds N.C. meeting (AP news analysis) -- A federal panel is holding hearings in North Carolina as its members examine how well the voting rights of minorities are being protected nationally.
AMY SULLIVAN: Millions of Americans believe God made Trump President(Politico analysis) -- If Donald Trump got a little bored on his flight home from the World Economic Forum in Davos, he might have paged through a book handed to him by a delegate not long after he arrived: “God and Donald Trump.” Written by Stephen Strang, a leading Pentecostal figure and the longtime publisher of Charisma magazine, is an easy read—part spiritual hagiography, part Fox News bulletin and part prophecy. It ultimately says far less about Trump than about the charismatic Pentecostals, his earliest religious supporters who view his election as the fulfillment of God’s will.
Mueller probe must go on (Winston-Salem Journal) -- President Trump has squared off against FBI leadership over a classified memo on FBI surveillance during the 2016 presidential race. Whatever happens with the memo, it’s all the more clear that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian involvement in the 2016 race must continue.
DEREK ROBERTSON: The states of our union … are still not all strong (Politico analysis) -- POLITICO Magazine is continuing our tradition of combining 14 metrics, based on data from the Census Bureau, other government agencies and nonprofits, to produce our own power rankings of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. North Carolina ranks 39th. The state ranked 38th in 2016, 37th in 2015 and 39th in 2014..
TED VADEN: Time to confront the truth behind Silent Sam (Durham Herald-Sun column) – Of course, Silent Sam should be removed from McCorkle Place on the UNC campus.
SUSAN LADD: Trump's State of the Union Address, Annotated Editon (Greensboro News & Record column) - You could write a book on what Trump didn't say when listing his accomplishments and waxing poetic about patriotism.
REP. DAVID PRICE: President Trump’s speech divides, stokes fears (Durham Herald-Sun column) -- The president failed to address the numerous challenges we face, and he failed to take any responsibility for creating many of these problems in the first place.
DILLON DAVIS: Bellissimo buys Rutherfordton cabinet manufacturer, 67 jobs remain intact (Asheville Citizen-Times analysis) -- Just days after employees learned of the impending closure of Touchstone Fine Cabinetry in Rutherfordton, the company found a buyer that is expected to grow the business and keep its 67 jobs intact. Boston developer Mark Bellissimo and Tryon Equestrian Partners said this week they have purchased the company from United Cabinet Holdings. Bellissimo, who is the CEO of United States Precision Construction, said he saw an opportunity to acquire a business he calls "strategically complementary" to his existing one.
NAOMI PRIEOLEAU: Some County Officials Tackle The Opioid Epidemic In Court (WUNC-FM analysis) -- Samantha Morgan has been in an on-and-off relationship with sobriety for the majority of her life. When she was 12, she was homeless and living on the streets of Miami. By the age of 13, she had a $300-a-day cocaine habit.
These NC counties have more opioid prescriptions than people (Charlotte Observer analysis) -- New state figures show the true dimensions of North Carolina’s opioid problem
FERREL GUILLORY: Teacher pay debate deserves more than a flare-up (EdNC column) -- On the scale of political controversies, the recent squabble over the pay of teachers rates as a standard-issue state capital flare-up. And yet, it demonstrates anew the current inability of education policymakers to put the state on a faster track toward increasing the pay, quality and supply of classroom teachers.
NC school board delays choosing operator for takeover school (AP news analysis) -- North Carolina's school officials are going to keep looking for a company to run the first academically low-performing school to be taken away from its local school board.
ADAM OWENS: More than 100 Wake County teachers must return $4,300 bonus after district error (WRAL-TV analysis) -- Dozens of Wake County teachers are being told they owe money to the district after they received bonuses in error.
ALEX GRANADOS: Filings in Leandro: Plaintiffs respond to State Board’s motion for relief (EdNC analysis) -- Plaintiffs and intervenors in the landmark Leandro v. State case filed motions this week in opposition to the State Board’s attempt to be taken off the case.
JEREMY BAUER-WOLF: The Death of College Free-Speech Zones (Inside Higher Ed analysis) -- State legislatures are banning spaces colleges have carved out for free expression and protest that many consider restrictive.
MATTHEW BURNS: Duke Energy to pass tax savings along to customers (WRAL-TV analysis) -- Duke Energy plans to pass along savings from the new federal tax law to its North Carolina customers, officials said.
JOHN DOWNEY: Duke Energy says tax-cut savings should go to customers — but not all at once (Charlotte Business Journal analysis) -- Duke Energy says making rates reflect an immediate and full accounting of the federal tax cut would leave its utilities with cash-flow problems and hurt their credit ratings.
Duke Energy: We'll pass along tax cut, but not too much (AP news analysis) -- The company isn't specifying how much of its $276 million in tax savings on North Carolina operations it's willing to pass along to customers.
Duke wants to raise residential power bills 17 percent. Here’s how much it should get (Charlotte Observer) -- Duke Energy has proposed a large rate hike, in large part to pay for its coal ash cleanup. The NC Utilities Commission should do some different math.
HARVARD AYERS: A bad pipeline decision for N.C. (Winston-Salem Journal column) -- Gov. Roy Cooper’s recent approval of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline represents one of the worst environmental decisions made in many years by a North Carolina governor. The pipeline will cross many streams in eastern North Carolina down the Interstate 95 corridor
Is the NC Senate trying to kill the state’s GenX response? (Fayetteville Obssrver) -- Republicans in the state Senate have given us our first look at how they plan to handle the GenX pollution in the Cape Fear River and around the Chemours plant on the Cumberland-Bladen county line. We all should be afraid. It looks as if they want to block state agencies from doing anything about the pollution.
LAURA LESLIE: DEQ investigating spike in GenX near chemical plant (WRAL-TV analysis) -- State environmental officials are trying to figure out what caused a recent spike in GenX levels near the Bladen County plant where the chemical is produced.
STEVE DEVANE: GenX testing area expands; residents troubled by unknowns, inconveniences (Fayetteville Observer analysis) -- State officials have expanded the area where private wells are being tested for a potentially cancer-causing compound for the third time. Wells within about 2½ miles of the Chemours plant in Bladen County are now being tested for GenX,
ADAM WAGNER: DEQ officials address Bladen crowd’s GenX concerns (Wilmington Star-News analysis) --More than 200 people attended the meeting, which covered a litany of topics
KIRK ROSS: New Questions As GenX Debate Continues (Coastal Review analysis) -- New questions regarding the state’s regulatory authority have emerged as the debate continues over how to respond to the issue of GenX and other emerging contaminants.
EMERY DALESIO: Duke Energy changes aimed at increasing minority contractors (AP news analysis) -- One of the largest U.S. electricity companies is making changes that could make it easier for black, female and other minority-owned construction and hauling firms to compete for work on its multibillion-dollar project to excavate and close coal-ash storage pits.
Attorneys general urge offshore drilling plan's cancellation (AP news analysis) -- The top lawyers for a dozen coastal states including North Carolina want the U.S. Interior Department to cancel the Trump administration's plan to expand offshore drilling, warning it threatens their maritime economies and natural resources.

Copyright 2023 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.