Yesterday WRAL reported that NC House Speaker Tim Moore is currently serving as the lead attorney in a negligence case against Duke Energy. Meanwhile Duke’s lobbyists are working hard to pass S559, a bill that could make major changes to the way North Carolina sets electricity rates to benefit the company. Despite Moore’s claims that no improper dealing has occurred over the settlement or the legislation the case certainly gives the appearance of an ethics violation. This is not the first time Moore’s work as an attorney and work as a lawmaker have blurred ethics lines.
Running list of laws passed by the Republican-led NC legislature that have been found unconstitutional.Read More
Representative Charles Graham (D-Robeson) was elected to the North Carolina House in 2010 and is currently serving his fifth term.
Graham has a history of siding with Republicans instead of his constituents when it comes to protecting clean air and water. Graham’s votes prioritized big corporations like Duke Energy instead of the people he was elected to represent.
Graham voted for H467 in 2017, which prioritized big agricultural companies over nearby residents suffering from environmental hazards affecting their quality of life. Graham also supported H576, a bill that would have allowed landfill operators to dispose of “garbage juice” by spraying it into the air, sending harmful chemicals flying over neighbors’ homes and businesses. Robeson county is majority people of color and people of color are more likely to live near solid waste facilities. Finally, Graham voted in support of S729, which allowed Duke Energy to charge customers to clean up its coal ash mess, but the bill did not include Robeson county on the list for priority cleanup. Read more here.Read More
Rep. Steve Ross (R-Alamance) is running for a fourth term in the North Carolina House of Representatives.
In a new ad, Ross claims he’s made several legislative decisions that help Alamance County: boosting teacher pay, safeguarding schools, protecting clean water and cutting income tax for 99 percent of families. His record proves otherwise.
Yarborough simply follows his Republican colleagues lead and votes in line with his party, which has resulted in a lack of public education funding in North Carolina. Yarborough voted for multiple Republican budgets, all of which failed to meaningfully increase teacher pay and left NC nearly…Read More
Jonathan Jordan was elected in 2010 and has served four terms. Previously working for the right-wing John Locke Foundation, Jordan has maintained his strong relationship with the group’s founder, Art Pope. Since being in office, he has accepted thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from associated groups and consistently voted for legislation in line with Pope’s radical right-wing vision for North Carolina. North Carolina deserves a legislator that will put the needs of North Carolina first, not wealthy benefactors.
Jordan has spent his eight years in the legislature undermining education in NC. Because of Jordan’s votes, education remains insufficiently funded. North Carolina teacher pay has not meaningfully increased during Jordan’s time in office. Jordan has supported legislation that takes money away from public education and diverts it to private schools, prioritizing his private interests over the wellbeing of students across the state. To make it even worse, Jordan has accepted campaign contributions from groups who do not care about North Carolina’s future for education. Jordan cares more about his own pocket than our teachers and students.
Jordan voted against expanding Medicaid to North Carolinians, causing costs to skyrocket for all North Carolinians and especially those who need it the most – it’s a big part of why we have the 3rd most expensive health care in the country. Clearly in line with Art Pope’s agenda, Jordan’s vote against Medicaid expansion actively hurts North Carolinians and limits access to healthcare.
Jordan, having received donations from Duke Energy, chose to not hold them accountable after their coal ash spill in 2016 and to pass the cost onto the ratepayers. After the spill, legislation was introduced that would free Duke Energy from the responsibility of cleaning up the disaster they caused. This ultimately saved Duke Energy billions of dollars, at the expense of North Carolinians and the environment.
Read on for more about Jordan’s record of placing his relationships.
Source: WataugaWatchRead More
This installment of Real Facts NC’s legislator profile series focuses on Senator Joel Ford, a Democrat from Mecklenburg County. Ford, a self-proclaimed “recovering entrepreneur” who has bought and sold several businesses, was elected to the NC Senate in 2012 after a brief stint as a political consultant. Ford, formerly a VP of the embattled Cardinal Innovations Healthcare, came in a distant third in Charlotte’s 2017 mayoral election.
Ford took an anti-LGBTQ stance during the HB2 controversy and aftermath, even sponsoring a failed repeal bill based on an indefinite moratorium for nondiscrimination ordinances. During the Charlotte mayoral race, Ford responded to a constituent who expressed concerns about his record on LGBTQ issues with a gif of a dog pooping. Ford’s record of looking out for himself first has been proven time and time again. Read more here.
"We need to be sensitive to religious freedom and respecting individual rights, and that has proven to be difficult because of people who look for tolerance while they themselves are intolerant” – Joel Ford, 3/25/15
In this Real Facts Legislator Profile, we focus on Rep. Jonathan Jordan, the Republican Representative from District 93. He was first elected in 2010 in a victory decided by fewer than 800 votes. He currently chairs the committees on Education, Homelessness, Foster Care and Dependency, the House Select Committee on Administrative Procedure Laws, and House Judiciary III. Jordan, an attorney, spent two years as the first research director at the conservative John Locke Foundation from 1997-1999, a 501(C)(3) research institute that espouses conservative ideals. He also served as the director for a tax-exempt pregnancy care center in Ashe County with the primary purpose of pseudo-science anti-abortion counseling. When he ran in 2010, Art Pope and outside groups flooded money into his campaign in a Koch-sponsored effort to flip the state legislature. Since his election, Jordan has pushed Pope ideals at the expensive of working people in North Carolina. Read more on Jordan here.
We’ve already covered the revolving door of lawmakers resigning from the General Assembly only to return to Raleigh a few months later. Former House Majority Leader Mike Hager started his own lobbying firm, Hager Strategic Solutions, shortly after his ‘cooling off period.’ Former house rules chairman, Tom Apodaca registered as a lobbyist in 2017 and started his firm, Vista Strategies. He has already amassed clients including Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, and the North Carolina Cable Telecommunications Network. Thom Goolsby also has his own firm, with clients including the NC Small Business Association and the Education Freedom Alliance.
In order to get a sense of exactly how much money lobbyists were funneling into North Carolina, we looked at reports issued by the Secretary of State from 2007-2016. In 2016, $45,307,721.63 was spent on lobbyists in North Carolina. This number is striking because, despite the fact that 2016 was an election year and therefore a “short” session, it is only a few hundred dollars fewer than 2013 spending and well exceeds 2014 levels. In 2015, more than $49 million was spent on lobbying the North Carolina General Assembly, compared to the just over $20 million spent just five years earlier. The overall trend is clear. Moneyed interests are spending more and more on lobbying the North Carolina legislature.
August 14, 2017: A coal ash dump in Chatham County run by Duke Energy contractor Charah now has a 90-day permit to collect the liquid it leaks and spray it into the air, but Courtney Wood at UNC-Chapel Hill's school of public health says the process "negates any basic chemistry from high school."
So yes, a Duke Energy contractor plans to use this process for coal ash.
Charah CEO Charles Price contributed at least $22,000 in 2016 and 2017 to NC Republicans, including Berger and Moore. Additionally, Charah has a history of violating permits. The company was previously cited at least twice by NC for starting construction at sites without required permits, but received no fine under Gov. McCrory’s DEQ.
June 1, 2017: The fluid that collects beneath landfills, referred to as leachate, could soon be sprayed into the air, thanks to House Bill 576 sponsored by Rep. Jimmy Dixon.