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Archive for May, 2012

Sea turtles nesting earlier

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

A mild winter has the region’s beaches seeing nests weeks earlier than normal

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Charlotte seeks AG ruling on amendment, benefits

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC (AP) — Charlotte city leaders are asking the state attorney general to decide whether it’s OK to offer same-sex partner benefits in light of the constitutional amendment that defines marriage solely as a union between a man and a woman.

The Charlotte Observer reported that the City Council voted Wednesday to seek the opinion from the office of Attorney General Roy Cooper.

City Manager Curt Walton had recommended that the city offer the benefits. He did so the day after voters overwhelmingly approved the constitutional amendment.

City Attorney Bob Hagemann says he doesn’t know whether North Carolina municipalities will be able to offer benefits for same-sex partners in light of the amendment. Nine local governments already offer the benefits.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Lanes will close on Holmes bridge

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

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NC speaker OKs payments to resigning staffers

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The state House speaker says he was considering the effect on families when he authorized payments equal to a month’s salary for two high-level staffers who resigned because of inappropriate relationships with lobbyists.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reported that the payments totaled more than $19,000 and went to Charles Thomas and Amy Hobbs. Thomas was the chief of staff to Speaker Thom Tillis and Hobbs was his policy adviser.

High-ranking legislative employees are exempt from state personnel laws and generally work “at will” in North Carolina. That means they can be dismissed for no reason and without severance.

Tillis defended the payments Wednesday, saying they take into account families who were affected by the abrupt job losses. He said Hobbs is a single mother.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Wilmington 10 seek pardons from Perdue

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

EMERY P. DALESIO
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Ten North Carolina youths sent to prison in the 1970s who became known as the Wilmington 10 are seeking pardons of innocence from Gov. Bev Perdue before she leaves office this year.

The seven survivors and relatives of three dead members of the group convicted after a grocery store burned during a 1971 race riot filed petitions Thursday with Perdue’s office.

Wilmington 10 leader Benjamin Chavis and nine others were freed when a federal appeals court overturned their convictions in 1980. Chavis later became executive director of the NAACP. He says North Carolina’s politics and history 40 years after their convictions make this the right time to seek pardons.

Perdue is not seeking re-election this year. Her spokeswoman says the petitions will get full and fair consideration.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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