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Enjoy holiday, but stay safe

The Fourth of July is a favorite holiday for many North Carolinians.Families and friends have gathered across the state to celebrate our nation’s independence with parades and parties.Many communities plan official fireworks celebreations, events that we think are a much a safer option than trying to put on your own pyrotechnic display. But fireworks are not the only danger this Fourth of July. Independence Day celebrations and cookouts often include alcohol that c...

9 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Time for Robeson to shed the labels

District Attorney Johnson Britt recently said Robeson County should “put away the labels.” He’s right.Although he was specifically referring to the sheriff’s race, the point is well taken across the spectrum. For example, Gov. Pat McCrory is not on the ballot again until 2016. Even in the remote chance Roy Cooper captures the Governor’s mansion, both legislative houses are expected to be under Republican control at least another four to six years.

11 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Planned pipeline would hurt environment, should be stopped

To the Editor,Dominion Power has proposed a new natural gas pipeline through West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina. If installed, the pipeline will contribute to worsening climate change through increased carbon dioxide emissions from fracking and the burning of natural gas. The pipeline and the fracking that it encourages will cause immediate environmental damage. It will encroach on our private property, and it will be a safety hazard. It may provide short-term profits for ...

11 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Welfare state

Without a lot of attention, the board for the Robeson County Department of Social Services last week approved a budget of an astounding $441 million that takes effect on Tuesday. That is such a huge number that perspective is demanded, and here it is: That budget is about eight times the DSS budget for 1994, which is just 20 years ago.Obviously inflation can’t account for all of that explosion.If there is good news, it’s this: Only about $13 million of that i...

13 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Washington shouldn’t stifle job creation

If you are like me, you’re fed up with the bad news, scandals and coverups continually coming out of Washington. From the Internal Revenue Service using the “dog-ate-my-homework” excuse to duck responsibility, to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs failing to provide adequate care for our heroes, our government agencies continue to disappoint hardworking individuals and families. It was reported last week that the U.S. economy declined at a sharper pace in the first quar...

13 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Cutting taxes is the real budget story

Most of the talk in Raleigh these days is about the sniping between House and Senate leaders as lawmakers try to come up with a final budget agreement.This week House Speaker Thom Tillis joined Gov. Pat McCrory on the lawn of the Governor’s Mansion to tout a new proposal by the House to pass a scaled-down budget that would give teachers a raise and put some money aside for increased Medicaid costs.Senate leaders blasted the proposal as a media stunt and some of the...

15 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Economy could favor GOP in November

RALEIGH — Gov. Pat McCrory and the GOP-led state legislature are at odds over the budget, Medicaid reform, Common Core, and other issues. Conservatives are disappointed with the McCrory administration’s continued defense of corporate incentives. Senators disagree with the House budget’s reliance on optimistic projections for lottery revenues and Medicaid growth. Representatives disagree with the Senate budget’s reliance on optimistic assumptions about the ability to sh...

15 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Will McCrory stand up for Common Core?

Gov. Pat McCrory has previously upheld North Carolina’s decision to adopt the Common Core State Standards.Speaking to a group of business-minded folks at a state chamber of commerce meeting last summer, McCrory praised Common Core.“It’s not the standards that are bad; it’s the execution which must be improved here in North Carolina.”But as the legislature hovers close to joining a handful of other states that have repealed the aca...

16 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Tribal government needs to stop paying ex-administrator

To the Editor,In a recent article featuring past Tribal Administrator Leon Jacobs, it appears that both he and others in the Lumbee Administration still think there are still a bunch of ignorant Indians around here.I don’t understand why Jacobs is getting a monthly stipend from the Lumbee Tribe. Is he still collecting the monies that were spent on the land around Raynham off of U.S. 301, which was meant for the landing strip for the private plane to come in and gam...

16 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Food choice

Pardon the pun, but obesity in Robeson County is a bigger problem than it is just about everywhere else, and it is a big problem pretty much everywhere else, certainly in the United States, which is at the top of the fat chart among countries.About 25 percent of Americans are considered obese, and the percentage in Robeson County is about 33 percent, meaning that for every three people we see, one is going to be obese — not merely overweight, but carrying pounds that are thre...

17 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Every budget can’t be the best for NC

Every year at the General Assembly members of the majority party in the House and Senate describe the budget put together by their chamber’s leaders as the best possible budget for North Carolina, one that will create jobs, improve education, and take care of folks who need help.Some lawmakers go even further, calling the House or Senate budget the best one they have ever seen in their legislative careers.

17 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

NC leads Carolinas in growing jobs

RALEIGH — Within hours of the announcement last week that two Charlotte-based companies, LPL Financial and The Lash Group, would relocate thousands of jobs across the border to South Carolina, political and civic leaders in Charlotte and Raleigh began pushing the panic button on business incentives, arguing that North Carolina’s current package of corporate giveaways is inadequate.The resulting furor was a perfect illustration of why you can’t make good public pol...

17 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Rocking with a waitress in Nashville

In the latest issue of Vanity Fair, there’s a story about popular novels vs. serious novels. It asks the question: Can they be one and the same?In the course of not reaching any conclusions, the article quotes a critic who complains: “Doesn’t anyone care how something is written anymore?”That question is pertinent to today’s music as well as novels. Doesn’t anyone care how something is written? Do words matter?Where are the ...

18 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Hillary’s struggle to make ends meet

We haven’t learned much new about Hillary Clinton on her book tour except that she mistakes herself for a version of Norma Rae.First, during an interview in her well-appointed Washington, D.C., home with ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer, she said she and Bill left the White House “dead broke,” although they always made better potential subjects for “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” than “Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.”Next, in an in...

18 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

Keeping ‘HOPE’ alive

Maria Parker did the hard part, pedaling 3,002 miles across America in 11 days, 20 hours and 54 minutes.Yours is the easy part, attending the 50-minute documentary about that effort titled “HOPE” that will be shown Tuesday at the Carolina Civic Center. At $20, which includes food and beverages, it’s a bargain, especially since the money will be added onto the $120,000 or more that Parker has raised to defeat brain cancer since learning in October 2012 that her sis...

20 days 9 hours ago | | | Email

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