Carolina Journal Radio

Carolina Journal Radio No. 736: Beaufort County community fights solar facility

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As N.C. state government continues to consider policies that benefit the solar energy industry, residents of one Beaufort County community are fighting a proposed 600-acre solar facility planned near a local school. Rick Henderson, Carolina Journal editor-in-chief, explains why people in Terra Ceia are raising concerns about the project. North Carolina lawmakers have been debating proposed changes in laws limiting the freedom of craft brewers to distribute their own products. It’s an issue that has attracted attention from Christopher Koopman, senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. Koopman explains why state restrictions on craft breweries in North Carolina and other states create impediments blocking economic growth. During a recent debate about state tax plans, members of the N.C. House Finance Committee tackled a basic question: Does it make more sense to build North Carolina’s General Fund or to devote particular funding sources to specific government programs? At issue was the use of money raised from deed stamps. But some lawmakers raised the larger issue of when it makes sense to tie specific programs to dedicated revenue streams. It’s rare for a legislative body to take an overwhelming public vote against a bill. But the N.C. Senate recently took that step to block a proposed Megaproject Fund for transportation. Senators explained during their debate that they fear the Megaproject concept would blunt the positive impact of the Strategic Transportation Investments reform. STI was designed to replace politics with data in guiding state transportation spending decisions. The N.C. Court of Appeals recently ruled against the estates of three eugenics victims. The estates had sued to win access to part of the $10 million state eugenics compensation fund. Jon Guze, John Locke Foundation director of legal studies, analyzes the court ruling’s significance.