Carolina Journal Radio

Carolina Journal Radio No. 884: JLF leads national effort to boost state CARES Act flexibility

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The John Locke Foundation is leading a national effort to ensure state governments have more flexibility in their use of federal CARES Act money. Without that flexibility, states will have incentives to engage in unsustainable new spending. John Locke Foundation CEO Amy Cooke explains how JLF is working to help avoid that outcome. North Carolina could lose half its small businesses if government doesn’t relax soon the economic restrictions tied to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ray Starling, general counsel of the NC Chamber, delivered that warning recently to state lawmakers. Starling also offered lawmakers a larger assessment of the pandemic’s impact on the business community. He offered ideas for addressing businesses’ concerns. Legislators will reconvene in Raleigh next week. Some of them have been preparing in advance for legislation responding quickly to COVID-19’s impact. State House Speaker Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, discusses the goals of special House working groups that spent weeks meeting online. The pandemic has upended traditional education in North Carolina, including public community colleges and universities. Before the health scare, higher education leaders already were discussing the need to adapt to the state’s changing economic needs. Peter Hans, president of the N.C. Community College System, co-chairs the MyFutureNC group. Hans and Jeni Corn, MyFutureNC’s director of strategic initiatives, discussed that group’s goals before the pandemic struck the state. The pandemic continues to prompt changes in K-12 education as well. Terry Stoops, the John Locke Foundation’s vice president for research and director of education studies, discusses potential COVID-19 impacts on summer school, the possible extension of the school year, and students’ readiness for the next grade level.