Category: Politics

February 27th, 2019 by newbernpostadmin

Gov. Roy Cooper today announced new election dates to fill the seat in North Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District, which has been vacant since Congressman Walter Jones, Jr. passed away earlier this month. 

“People in eastern North Carolina need a voice in Congress,” Gov. Cooper said. “We’re moving ahead so they can choose their new representative quickly.” 

Gov. Cooper issued a writ of election and proclamation directing that a special general election to elect a representative to serve out the remainder of the current two-year term for the Third Congressional District be held on July 9, 2019. 

Candidates seeking to fill the seat should file notices of candidacy with the State Board of Elections between March 4 and March 8, 2019. To nominate candidates, a special primary election will be held on April 30, 2019. Absentee voting for the special primary election will begin on March 15, 2019. 

The special general election would take place July 9, 2019, unless a primary runoff is required. If a primary runoff occurs on July 9, the special general election would then be held on September 10, 2019. 

Absentee voting for the July 9 election will begin on May 24, 2019. If the September 10 election date is needed, absentee voting will start on July 26, 2019.

Federal and state laws require the governor to schedule election dates to fill the vacant seat in the Third Congressional District. The State Board of Elections is responsible for scheduling a new election in North Carolina’s Ninth Congressional District. 

Posted in Elections, New Bern, Politics

February 18th, 2019 by newbernpostadmin

State Rep. Michael Speciale is seeking to fill the late Walter Jones’ unexpired seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Other candidates who have announced plans to run include Phillip Shepard and Philip Law. Michele Nix, vice-chairman of the NCGOP, is also reportedly preparing to announce her candidacy.

“After much encouragement and prayer, Michael Speciale of Craven County has decided to run for the U.S. House seat for District 3. This seat was left vacant by the untimely passing of Walter B. Jones,” Jones said in a news release.

Jones died Feb. 10 and his funeral was held Feb. 14. N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper must declare a vacancy on the congressional seat to exist and set a date for a special election to fill the remainder of Jones’ two-year term.

Speciale said he is known for standing up for what he believes is right for the people of his district. However, he has also said he does not represent people in his district with whom he disagrees. More on Speciale here, here, and here.

During his time at the state House of Representatives,

Speciale has backed legislation banning gay marriage, arming school teachers, and restoring North Carolina’s ability to leave the country.

According to Wikipedia, during a debate for an Anti-Puppy Mill Bill, which was a central focus for the First Lady of North Carolina, Ann McCrory’s legislative interests, Speciale stated: “Exercise on a daily basis – if I kick him across the floor, is that daily exercise? ‘Euthanasia performed humanely’ – so I should choose the ax or the baseball bat?”

Speciale said in his news release that he believes in God, country, family, the free market, personal responsibility and smaller government.

“He is unapologetic for what he believes and has made media headlines for standing strong for those positions. He is a strong constitutional conservative who remains true to those values that have made America great,” he said in his release.

Speciale is in his fourth term as the representative for the North Carolina House District 3 seat, which covers a large portion of Craven County.

He previously represented Beaufort and Pamlico Counties as well.

Speciale is Chairman of the Homeland Security, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee, Vice-Chairman of State and Local Government, and a member of the Transportation, Elections & Ethics Law, Appropriations and Appropriations Justice, and Public Safety committees.

Speciale is the founder and chairman of the House Freedom Caucus.
Speciale is a retired Marine and a member of Freedom Baptist Church in Havelock.

He was twice elected as the Craven County Republican Party Chairman, is a former chairman of the Coastal Carolina Taxpayers Association (CCTA), as well as a graduate Fellow of the North Carolina Institute of Political Leadership (NCIOPL).

He is a graduate of Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET) at Craven Community College, and he has an Associate in Applied Sciences in Business Management/Operations Management.

Speciale is a Life Member of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and The Retired Enlisted Association (TREA).

He and his wife Hazel live in the New Bern area and have been married nearly 45 years. They have two children, eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Posted in Elections, Politics, State politics

February 10th, 2019 by newbernpostadmin

“Feb 10, 2019 Greenville, NC – After faithfully representing the people of Eastern North Carolina in Congress and the state legislature for over 34 years, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) passed away this afternoon in Greenville, North Carolina.  He was 76.  

“Congressman Jones was a man of the people.  With a kind heart and the courage of his convictions, he dedicated his life to serving his Savior and to standing up for Americans who needed a voice. He was a champion for our men and women in uniform and their families, always mindful of their service and sacrifice. 

“Congressman Jones will long be remembered for his honesty, faith and integrity.  He was never afraid to take a principled stand.  He was known for his independence, and widely admired across the political spectrum.  Some may not have agreed with him, but all recognized that he did what he thought was right. 

“He will be sorely missed.”          

Posted in New Bern, Politics

October 18th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin
Early voting is underway. Election Day is Nov. 6.
CRAVEN BOARD OF ELECTIONS
CANDIDATE DETAIL LIST
CRITERIA:  Election: 11/06/2018, Show Contest w/o Candidate: N
CONTEST NAME / SEAT NAME / PARTY
CANDIDATE NAME / NAME ON BALLOT
FILING DATE / CAND PTY
RESIDENTIAL ADDRESS
MAILING ADDRESS
US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES DISTRICT 03
JONES, WALTER B JR
02/22/2018
3693 HILLCREST DR
P O BOX 668
Walter B. Jones
REP
FARMVILLE, NC 27828
FARMVILLE, NC 27828
NC STATE SENATE DISTRICT 02
GARNER, GINGER RACHELLE
Ginger Garner
02/19/2018
DEM
405 CHRISTINA CT
EMERALD ISLE, NC 28594
PO BOX 5615
EMERALD ISLE, NC 28594
NC STATE SENATE DISTRICT 02
HARRIS, TIMOTHY JOHN
02/12/2018
1701 RHEM AVE
Tim Harris
LIB
NEW BERN, NC 28560
NC STATE SENATE DISTRICT 02
SANDERSON, NORMAN WESLEY JR
Norman Sanderson
02/12/2018
REP
269 BENNETT RD 4
MINNESOTT BEACH, NC
28510
NC HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES DISTRICT 003
HORNE, T LEE III
02/12/2018
112 ELLEN CT
T. Lee Horne III
LIB
HAVELOCK, NC 28532
NC HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES DISTRICT 003
LEE, BARBARA JEAN
02/23/2018
1813 BEAUFORT ST
Barbara Lee
DEM
NEW BERN, NC 28560
NC HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES DISTRICT 003
SPECIALE, MICHAEL DAVID
02/12/2018
803 STATELY PINES RD
Michael Speciale
REP
NEW BERN, NC 28560
NC HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES DISTRICT 079
KIDWELL, KEITH D
02/13/2018
53 ELKS RD
2013 W 15TH ST
Keith Kidwell
REP
CHOCOWINITY, NC 27817
WASHINGTON, NC 27889
NC HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES DISTRICT 079
LANGLEY, JERRY EARL
02/12/2018
101 AVENUE RD
PO BOX 3045
Jerry E. Langley
DEM
WASHINGTON, NC 27889
WASHINGTON, NC 27889
DISTRICT ATTORNEY DISTRICT 04
THOMAS, SCOTT EUGENE
02/12/2018
900 STREETS FERRY RD
900 STREETS FERRY RD
Scott Thomas
DEM
VANCEBORO, NC 28586
VANCEBORO, NC 28586
NC SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE SEAT 1
JACKSON, BARBARA ANN
06/18/2018
5400 HOUNDS EAR PL
PO BOX 10243
JACKSON
Barbara Jackson
REP
RALEIGH, NC 27606
RALEIGH, 27605
NC SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE SEAT 1
JACKSON
ANGLIN, CHRISTOPHER JAMES
Christopher (Chris) Anglin
06/29/2018
REP
5634 BERRY CREEK CIR
RALEIGH, NC 27613
P.O. BOX 90761
RALEIGH, NC 27675
NC SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE SEAT 1
EARLS, ANITA SUE
06/18/2018
6 SUPERIOR CT
6 SUPERIOR CT
JACKSON
Anita Earls
DEM
DURHAM, NC 27713
DURHAM, NC 27713
CONTEST NAME / SEAT NAME / PARTY
CANDIDATE NAME / NAME ON BALLOT
FILING DATE / CAND PTY
RESIDENTIAL ADDRESS
MAILING ADDRESS
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 1
HEATH, ANDREW TAUBE
06/18/2018
1508 PONY RUN RD
ARROWOOD
Andrew T. Heath
REP
RALEIGH, NC 27615
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 1
ARROWOOD, JOHN S
06/18/2018
210 N CHURCH ST 1714
210 N CHURCH ST 1714
ARROWOOD
John S. Arrowood
DEM
CHARLOTTE, NC 28202
CHARLOTTE, NC 28202
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 2
CALABRIA
GRIFFIN, JEFFERSON GLENN
Jefferson G. Griffin
06/18/2018
REP
2725 ANDERSON DR
RALEIGH, NC 27608
P.O. BOX 99780
RALEIGH, NC 27624
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 2
CALABRIA
HAMPSON, TOBIAS SAMUEL
Tobias (Toby) Hampson
06/18/2018
DEM
8634 MURRAY HILL DR
RALEIGH, NC 27615
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 2
RAY, SANDRA ALICE
06/25/2018
5409 WIDGEON DR
CALABRIA
Sandra Alice Ray
REP
WILMINGTON, NC 28403
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 3
KITCHEN, SIDNEY CHUCK
06/18/2018
502 MAIN ST EXT 110
ELMORE
Chuck Kitchen
REP
SWANSBORO, NC 28584
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 3
ELMORE
MONACO, MICHAEL ANTHONY
Michael Monaco, Sr.
06/26/2018
LIB
805 WIMBERLY RD
APEX, NC 27523
805 WIMBERLY RD
APEX, NC 27523
NC COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE SEAT 3
ELMORE
COLLINS, ALLEGRA KATHERINE TORREY
Allegra Katherine Collins
06/18/2018
DEM
4716 LITTLE FALLS DR
RALEIGH, NC 27609
4441-106 SIX FORKS ROAD NO. 245
RALEIGH, NC 27609
NC SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE DISTRICT 03B SEAT 1
ALFORD
QUINN, PAUL MORRIS
Paul M. Quinn
06/18/2018
REP
171 ARBORVITAE DR
PINE KNOLL SHORES, NC
PO BOX 2342
ATLANTIC BEACH, NC 28512
28512
NC SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE DISTRICT 03B SEAT 2
NOBLES
NOBLES, JOHN EVERETT JR
John Nobles
06/18/2018
REP
4119 SOUND DR
MOREHEAD CITY, NC 28557
4119 SOUND DR
MOREHEAD CITY, NC 28557
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 1
HOLT, GREGORY MONROE
Greg Holt
06/18/2018
CST
2021 US 17 HWY N
NEW BERN, NC 28560
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 1
MARK, THOMAS F
Tom Mark
02/13/2018
REP
5504 BLACKBEARDS LN
NEW BERN, NC 28560
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 1
O’NEILL, JEFFREY BRIAN
Jeff O’Neill
02/13/2018
DEM
3400 NC 43 HWY
VANCEBORO, NC 28586
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 2
JONES, JASON RYAN
Jason R. Jones
02/12/2018
DEM
1745 ASBURY RD
COVE CITY, NC 28523
CONTEST NAME / SEAT NAME / PARTY
CANDIDATE NAME / NAME ON BALLOT
FILING DATE / CAND PTY
RESIDENTIAL ADDRESS
MAILING ADDRESS
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 3
SAMPSON, JOHNNIE JR
Johnnie Sampson, Jr.
02/12/2018
DEM
1038 SAMPSON ST
NEW BERN, NC 28560
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 4
MITCHELL, ETTEINNE BOATWRIGHT
E.T. Mitchell
02/12/2018
REP
3009 RIVER LN
NEW BERN, NC 28562
PO BOX 13365
NEW BERN, NC 28561
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 5
MCCABE, THERON LEE
Theron McCabe
02/14/2018
DEM
521 FERRY RD
HAVELOCK, NC 28532
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 6
LINER, GEORGE SIMPSON JR
George Liner
02/12/2018
REP
203 CAMBRIDGE CT
HAVELOCK, NC 28532
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 7
MUSE, KELLI SALTER
Kelli S. Muse
02/16/2018
DEM
300 NORTH RIDGE RD
NEW BERN, NC 28560
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS DISTRICT 7
BUCHER, DENNIS KIM
Denny Bucher
02/12/2018
REP
254 POLLOCK ST
NEW BERN, NC 28560
PO BOX 71
NEW BERN, NC 28563
CRAVEN COUNTY CLERK OF SUPERIOR COURT
HUFFMAN, ALEXIS VERNELSON
Lexanne Vernelson Huffman
02/23/2018
REP
1307 ALBURY CT
NEW BERN, NC 28562
CRAVEN COUNTY CLERK OF SUPERIOR COURT
SHARP, TERRI WOODARD
02/12/2018
3306 HEDGEROW CIR
Terri W. Sharp
DEM
NEW BERN, NC 28562
CRAVEN COUNTY SHERIFF
HUGHES, FRED III
02/12/2018
2430 HARBOR ISLAND RD
Chip Hughes
REP
NEW BERN, NC 28562
CRAVEN COUNTY SHERIFF
MONETTE, JERRY G
02/12/2018
4250 WILCOX RD
Jerry G. Monette
DEM
NEW BERN, NC 28562
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION DISTRICT 2
ORR, HERMAN R JR
H.R. Orr
02/12/2018
240 WILLIS RD
COVE CITY, NC 28523
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION DISTRICT 2
BOOMER, FRANCES HILL
Frances Boomer
02/19/2018
12310 OLD US 70 HWY
COVE CITY, NC 28523
PO BOX 296
COVE CITY, NC 28523
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION DISTRICT 4
SMITH, BEATRICE RIGGS
Beatrice (Bea) Smith
02/19/2018
1700 CHESTNUT AVE
NEW BERN, NC 28562
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION DISTRICT 6
HOWARD, CHADWICK BRYAN
Chadwick Howard
02/27/2018
104 TREVINO LN
NEW BERN, NC 28560
CONTEST NAME / SEAT NAME / PARTY
CANDIDATE NAME / NAME ON BALLOT
FILING DATE / CAND PTY
RESIDENTIAL ADDRESS
MAILING ADDRESS
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION
SMITH, KIMBERLY RICE
02/13/2018
203 SHORE DR
DISTRICT 6
Kimberly Rice Smith
HAVELOCK, NC 28532
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION
WALTON, JOSEPH LOUIS
02/21/2018
142 SECRETARIAT DR
DISTRICT 7 (UNEXPIRED TERM)
SR
Joseph Louis Walton
HAVELOCK, NC 28532
CRAVEN COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION
CLARK, NAOMI E
02/27/2018
600 FOX RIDGE CT
DISTRICT 7 (UNEXPIRED TERM)
Naomi Clark
HAVELOCK, NC 28532
CRAVEN SOIL AND WATER CONSERVATION
HEATH, DONALD ALLEN
06/18/2018
650 BIDDLE RD
DISTRICT SUPERVISOR
Donald Allen Heath
DOVER, NC 28526
CRAVEN SOIL AND WATER CONSERVATION
KIRKMAN, OBIE LEE JR
07/05/2018
5255 NC 55 HWY W
DISTRICT SUPERVISOR
Obie Lee Kirkman, Jr.
COVE CITY, NC 28523
CRAVEN SOIL AND WATER CONSERVATION
BRAXTON, KIRBY ROY
06/29/2018
1075 WEYERHAEUSER RD
DISTRICT SUPERVISOR
Kirby R. Braxton
VANCEBORO, NC 28586

Posted in Politics

October 9th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Gov. Roy Cooper directed $25 million from the North Carolina Education Lottery Fund on Tuesday to speed repairs to K-12 public schools damaged by Hurricane Florence.

“Students need to get back to learning and educators need to get back to teaching, but many school districts can’t afford the repairs schools need,” Cooper said. “The lives of thousands of students, teachers and families are on hold and they need our help to recover.”

While many schools have reopened since Hurricane Florence struck last month, seven North Carolina school systems remain closed, keeping more than 130 schools out of operation and nearly 90,000 students out of class.

Just four of Craven County’s 23 public schools were open for class on Monday. Three schools in Jones County will have to be entirely rebuilt.

Several affected school districts have depleted most of their contingency funds and need immediate financial assistance to repair roofs, flooring and electrical wiring, eradicate mold and mildew and replace furniture to get schools reopened.

The emergency funds will be administered by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. Priority will be given to district and charter schools in Brunswick, Craven, Duplin, Jones, New Hanover, Onslow, Pender and Robeson counties that have immediate repair needs and are not currently in operation.

Some of the repairs should be reimbursable by federal disaster recovery funds. Transferring the money now gives schools quicker help and allows them to retain contractors to speed repairs.

Posted in Craven County Schools, Education, FEMA, Hurricane, New Bern, Politics, State news, State politics

September 19th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

President Donald J. Trump visited MCAS Cherry Point to meet with state officials, military leaders, and disaster relief agency representatives to discuss the aftermath created by Hurricane Florence and the road ahead, Sept. 19.

President Trump visited Craven County this morning, landing at Marine Air Station Cherry Point and then taking a motorcade on U.S. 70 into New Bern, where he toured areas damaged by Hurricane Florence and met with volunteers, victims, and officials.

Trump held a news conference at Cherry Point that included cabinet officials and local government dignitaries including Sens. Richard Burr and Thom Tillis, Gov. Roy Cooper, and New Bern Mayor Dana Outlaw. Also there was Linda McMahon, a New Bern native who is now administrator of the Small Business Administration.

From there, Trump’s motorcade made its way through storm-stricken Havelock and north to New Bern, taking the Pembroke offramp for the first New Bern destination, Temple Baptist Church, where a large contingent of relief workers were staged.

After meeting with volunteers in the church parking lot, Trump and his entourage continued the motorcade to other parts of New Bern.

Video:

Trump’s motorcade entering the Ghent neighborhood en route to Temple Baptist Church

Trump at Temple Baptist Church, meeting with volunteers

Posted in Hurricane, Politics

June 11th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

NC Civitas | The state budget for FY 2018-19 contains nearly 170 line items totaling $30 million that are highly inappropriate or outright pork.

Appropriations directing funding to local pet projects include items such as walking trails, playgrounds, county fairs and highway signs. Moreover, dozens of nonprofit organizations receive direct appropriations in the budget. Make no mistake, these nonprofits perform admirable work. However, it is highly inappropriate – and unfair favoritism – to single out nonprofits for specific appropriations of state tax dollars, instead of having them go through the appropriate grant process.

There is little doubt that a large percentage, if not all, of these earmarks represent legislators trying to “bring home the bacon” to their districts in an election year. State taxpayers should not be forced to finance explicitly local projects.

Note that the items identified in this article include only adjustments made to the second year of the biennial budget passed last year. There no doubt are many more such earmarks that will be doled out this year that were previously included in last year’s budget.

Legislative leaders have rightly been criticized for the closed-door, non-transparent process used in crafting the budget. It is plausible to believe that these 166 line items were the result of political horse-trading behind closed doors, which left virtually no time for objections from legislators before the House and Senate voted.

Such a significant number of earmarks, while not adding up to a major percentage of the budget in dollar terms, raises legitimate concerns about political patronage in which representatives direct state funds to local projects in exchange for political support.

Below is the list of these items Civitas has identified:

Posted in Politics, State news, State politics

June 11th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Republican’s school safety plan makes some temporary changes, while giving lawmakers time to assess what else might be needed.

Education NC |  Republican lawmakers announced at a press conference last month $35 million in school safety grants that made their way into the revised 2018-19 budget.

The one-time money is meant to temporarily address school safety needs while the state gathers more information on what districts and schools require to protect students.

“A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step,” said Rep. David Lewis (R-Dunn). “I think this is an ongoing process.”

table showing school safety appropriations
Image courtesy: NCGA Republicans

The school safety plan stems from work performed by a committee on school safety that came into existence following the school shooting in Parkland, Florida and met regularly prior to the short session.

Governor Roy Cooper has his own school safety plan in his budget proposal. It amounts to a total of $130 million, including $65 million for making buildings safer and $40 million for additional personnel. Legislative Democrats also floated a similar plan yesterday.

But Republican lawmakers say it is too soon to know exactly how much money is needed. Part of the ongoing process going forward will be getting reports from districts sent to the state Department of Public Instruction so that legislators can understand what schools require. Rep. Linda Johnson (R-Kannapolis) said additional recurring money needs to be added to the budget in the future.

“Because the issue came up at the time that it came up, and the amount of effort that had to go into it, this is not the end, this is just the beginning,” she said.

The Republicans’ plan also includes between $30 and $90 million in new federal funding for student health, but that will not come until the second year because North Carolina needs a Medicaid State Plan Amendment before it can start collecting the funds. Essentially, the money will come from reimbursements from Medicaid for services the state is already providing.

More

Posted in Education, Politics, State news, State politics

June 11th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Longleaf Politics |  The latest major court ruling stemming from the General Assembly’s infamous 2016 “power grab”1came on Friday, as the N.C. Supreme Court settled a battle between the state Superintendent of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education over direct control of the public school system.

Both the state superintendent and the Board of Education declared victory after the decision. But the ruling is very clearly in favor of the General Assembly and the elected superintendent.

As it turns out, sometimes even a power grab results in clearer public policy.

What was the lawsuit about?

Let’s start all the way at the beginning: the state constitution. It sets up two distinct bodies tasked with public education.

The State Board of Education is directed to “supervise and administer the free public school system.” The Superintendent of Public Instruction, elected statewide every four years, is to “be the secretary and chief administrative officer of the State Board of Education.”

There’s not a whole lot of direction as to how this is to work in practice. That’s mostly been left to the General Assembly, and over the years the pendulum of duties has swung back and forth.

Once it became clear that Cooper would be the new governor, with the right to appoint State Board of Education members, the state legislature decided to tweak the responsibilities of the board and the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 34-year-old Republican Mark Johnson.

Some of the changes are more technical. Instead of the State Board of Education being in charge of establishing “policy,” it became responsible for “all needed rules and regulations” for North Carolina’s public schools.

The more substantive changes come to the superintendent role. Previously, the job was to run the day-to-day operations of the public school infrastructure “subject to the direction, control, and approval of the State Board.” That phrasing was removed in several places.

While the board remains the policymaking body, the superintendent now has clear responsibility for running the department.

More

Posted in Politics, State news, State politics

June 11th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Longleaf Politics | A recent memo sent by the N.C. Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association to its members this week provides us a revealing glimpse of how politics works in real life.

The new deal with state lawmakers that the memo discloses is a little in the weeds. The bill in question is House Bill 500, currently under consideration. It’s an omnibus ABC bill, meaning that it makes a lot of little adjustments to the state’s alcohol laws. It passed the House last April and is now in Senate committees.

The bill got a few new amendments in a Senate committee. One enables wholesale business owners to transfer control of the company to a family member. Previously, this could only be done upon the business owner’s death.

A second new provision ends a practice where big brewers were able to determine who a wholesaler could sell his business to.

Another new provision ends a mechanism where “suppliers” — meaning beer brewers — could own part of a wholesale business for eight years and make business loans to help other companies acquire wholesale businesses.

In all three cases, the changes make North Carolina’s alcohol laws just a little bit more wholesaler friendly. In the third part, that comes at the expense of beer brewers.

The bill passed committee as amended, but must first go to the full Senate and then back to the House now.

All that’s not the interesting part, though. The bill as a whole makes sense. Why should a big beer brewer be able to dictate how a wholesaler sells his business?

The interesting part is how the changes came about.

More

Posted in Politics, State news, State politics

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