Weekly Wrap: Incentives, coal ash

Posted August 29, 2014 6:57 p.m. EDT

— Lawmakers have been gone for only a week, but Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker wants Gov. Pat McCrory to call them back for a special session to address business recruitment incentives. Decker says a key fund used to attract new and expanding business will run dry this fall if the General Assembly doesn't expand it.

State environmental regulators don't plan additional legal action against Duke Energy regarding three sites where coal ash ponds are located, saying that efforts by the McCrory administration have pushed the utility into cleaning up the toxic lagoons. The move clears the way for environmental groups to sue Duke in federal court, alleging violations of the Clean Water Act.

McCrory said he plans to sign legislation setting timelines for Duke to clean up all 33 of its ash ponds statewide, but he says it might be an unconstitutional violation of separation of powers. He claims lawmakers are taking too much authority from his Department of Environment and Natural Resources.