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State Treasurer Dale Folwell: Reckless and Uncaring

Do you know what the state treasurer does or who he is?

Republican Dale Folwell frequently made the news during his first term as state treasurer for his recklessness and incompetence. His poor management of the state pension fund could cost teachers, retired state employees and taxpayers more than $350 million in tax returns. He offered a COVID-19 testing contract to a company that lied about its technology without speaking to any other companies. In both instances, Folwell ignored the advice of professional staff and hired unqualified friends to run crucial programs.

  • Retired financial manager Andy Silton, former Chief Investment Advisor to the North Carolina State Treasurer, wrote extensively on Folwell’s misguided money management which could cost retired state employees their pensions.
  • The News and Observer  wrote of Folwell’s contract with Mako Medical: “On April 23, a day after State Treasurer Dale Folwell announced the Raleigh-based company would make available 20,000 tests for prison and probation employees, the company made claims on Twitter and Facebook that a company representative now says were a mistake.”

Additionally, Folwell’s tenure as treasurer has been marked by his determination to deny North Carolinians basic rights like access to health care and safe, secure housing.

In the midst of a pandemic that has cost millions of North Carolinians their jobs, Folwell wanted to rescind a temporary order that banned utility companies from shutting off people’s electricity or water. Folwell wanted to let utility companies turn off people’s AC in July of one of the hottest years on record for North Carolina.

As state treasurer Folwell oversees the state health plan, which provides coverage to more than 700,000 teachers, state employees, retirees and their dependents. Folwell has fought ­against expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, costing North Carolina billions of dollars from the federal government. Folwell opposes expanding access to care for more than 500,000 North Carolinians even as pandemic-related job losses cost nearly 200,000 North Carolinians their health care and rural hospitals struggle to keep their doors open to provide care for COVID-19 patients and others.

Refusal to expand Medicaid isn’t Folwell’s only move to deny access to health care for North Carolinians. In 2017 he successfully cut care for transgender state employees from the state health plan and in 2018 doubled-down on this decision, denying more benefits to transgender people.

Folwell’s history of cruel cuts extends back to his time in the State Legislature where he gutted the state’s unemployment system and cut funding for public schools. 

Folwell voted for budgets that cut education spending by hundreds of millions of dollars and eliminated over 6300 public education jobs.

After serving in the NC House, Folwell led the state division of unemployment security and pushed for the legislature’s 2013 “deep cuts” to benefits for jobless North Carolinians. North Carolina is now one of the worst states in the nation to be unemployed at a time when millions are facing job loss.

A month out from the 2020 election, while presidential and US Senate drama dominates the airwaves, most North Carolinians continue to struggle with the effects of a global pandemic. It is important people know how crucial this statewide office is to their daily life and work.