News Reports (Page 627)

  • Lawmaker: Lee Act ‘Colossal Failure’

    RALEIGH — A new report on the William S. Lee Act shows that 96 percent of the jobs associated with the act would have been created anyway – without the incentives authorized by the legislation. The report, released Thursday by the North Carolina Department of Commerce, was prepared by Michael…

  • High-Poverty Schools Beat Odds

    Students at West Lumberton Elementary in Robeson County and Cedar Grove Elementary in Nash County are making extraordinary progress in academic achievement despite the fact that most qualify for the federal nutrition-assistance lunch program. Teacher say the advances are not rooted in greater funding, additional administrators, or trendy theories. They…

  • Bill Would Require Drought Plan

    RALEIGH—A bill requiring community water systems to establish measures for dealing with drought awaits Gov. Mike Easley’s signature. The measure requires that system officials prepare local water supply plans, that the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources establish a Drought Management Advisory Council, and that the council issue drought…

  • Study Offers Patent, Copyright Reforms

    RALEIGH—The length of time for copyright protection, which extends for the life of a creator plus 70 years, is excessive and society would benefit if that period were shortened, the dean of the Barton College School of Business says. In a new study, John J. Bethune wrote that patents and…

  • Prisons Continue Trend on Nonprofits

    RALEIGH — The NC General Assembly has fallen in love with nonprofit organizations that shield it from the direct responsibility for special projects funded by taxpayers. One example is Golden LEAF, which administers half the state’s share of the tobacco settlement. Another is the E-NC Authority, which distributes public funds…

  • State to Expand DNA Registry

    RALEIGH—Fingerprints are no longer enough for North Carolina law authorities. Neither is a database containing the DNA of those convicted of violent crimes. Legislation enacted this year by the General Assembly, seeks to expand the state’s DNA registry to include DNA samples of all felons and those convicted of “certain…

  • Private-College Bill Approved

    RALEIGH — A greater number of college students could be eligible for $1,800 state grants when classes start this fall. One of the last actions of the General Assembly before the legislative session ended in July was to pass a bill that increases eligibility, ending what some have labeled a…

  • N.C. Supreme Court Rejects Restrictions

    CHARLOTTE – Under the N.C. Constitution, the General Assembly may not enact special economic restrictions for parts of the state without a showing of special need. Based on this doctrine, the N.C. Supreme Court has upheld a lower-court ruling that employment discrimination regulations adopted by the Orange County Human Relations…

  • State Sours on Private Prisons

    RALEIGH — The biennial state budget signed June 30 by Gov. Mike Easley provided for the construction of three prisons in North Carolina. In addition, the General Assembly authorized the state to purchase what once was its only two significant private prisons from Correctional Properties Trust, the company that owns…

  • Measuring Charter Schools’ Impact

    Some North Carolina charter schools serve students that would qualify as alternative populations. The “alternative” designation would allow more flexibility in testing and assessment, and put them on an equal footing with alternative schools in the non-charter category. Meanwhile, studies of charter school performance in NC and across the country…