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Archive for July, 2014

NC Senate passes Medicaid reform legislation

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The North Carolina Senate has given tentative approval to a bill that changes how Medicaid is administered and paid for in the state.

Senators approved the measure, 28-17, on Thursday. It would create a new state agency to oversee and manage Medicaid and partially privatize it. The bill would carve out Medicaid regions in the state where both private companies and hospital-led health plans would compete for contracts to serve patients there.

The state would give health plans a set amount of money based on the number of Medicaid patients in their region.

Supporters say it will give the state stability on costs, which have been unpredictable, but opponents argue that it will restrict care, especially in rural and low-income areas.

The bill now goes to the House.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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GE pulling back on laser work

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

GE Hitachi will consolidate development activities at GE Hitachi’s Castle Hayne headquarters, suspending most contractor-based work on the laser enrichment technology

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Ports Authority officials focus on rail service to boost economic opportunities

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Among areas mentioned Thursday as prime spots for future economic development was the 1,025-acre Mid-Atlantic Industrial Rail Park in Brunswick County

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GOP-backed bill includes laundry list of changes

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — An omnibus bill backed by Republican leaders in the North Carolina House is seeking to make dozens of changes to state laws.

The changes include eliminating a task force that works to reduce child deaths and a provision allowing public charter schools boards to include members representing for-profit education companies.

The Technical and Other Corrections bill passed in committee on Thursday is headed for a quick vote on the House floor. Among the provisions are tweaks to state gun laws, including the elimination of a requirement for local clerks of court to notify the National Instant Criminal Background Check System of information that would bar an individual from legally purchasing a firearm.

Another measure would allow county sheriffs to potentially sell e-cigarettes to jail inmates.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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NC House fails to concur on moped regulations

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The North Carolina House has rejected a Senate version of a bill creating new regulations for mopeds.

The House voted 51-54 Thursday against concurring on a bill that would have required insurance and registration with the state for mopeds.

The insurance requirement has been a sticking point between the two chambers. The House version only mandates that mopeds be registered.

Onslow County Republican Rep. Philip Shepard said moped drivers should take responsibility for their vehicles, adding that insurance was necessary so innocent drivers don’t have to pay for damages in accidents.

But other lawmakers said the insurance provision would hurt low-income workers and could prevent them from getting to work.

The bill will now go to a conference committee for a compromise.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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