The Raleigh Report for Sept. 21, 2013

State Representative Ken Goodman

September 21, 2013

The Legislature is not in session at this time, but there are news events around the capital and state that may be of interest to you. I am enjoying being home in the district and have attended many events over the last several weeks. I have had the opportunity to meet personally with my constituents and listen to their questions and concerns, which is helpful to me as your representative.

Early Voting Starts Next Thursday

One-stop early voting opened across North Carolina on Thursday, Sept. 19, for voters in Dobbins Heights who will have its regular municipal election on Tuesday, Oct. 8. Anyone who missed the voter registration deadline can register to vote and then cast an absentee ballot at their county board of elections office during the early voting period, which ends on Saturday, Oct. 5.

This round of early voting is unaffected by the Voter ID Bill, which doesn’t take effect until 2016. The rules for voting are the same as the 2012 Elections.

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Moral Monday Moves to the Mansion

About 150 people marched in a solemn procession around North Carolina’s Executive Mansion on Monday to protest voting law changes by the state’s Republican-led legislature. But the Governor wasn’t there to see them. His office said he was attending a Republican Governors Association meeting in Charleston, S.C.

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News & Observer: DHHS Hires Governor’s Donor for $95,000 Senior Position

The state Department of Health and Human Services has filled a newly created $95,000 senior planner position with a Greenville woman who was a medical school lecturer for three years but who has been absent from the health care labor force since 2002. Margaret “Mardy” Peal, 42, has been hired as part of the “Partnership for a Healthy North Carolina,” the North Carolina Governor’s initiative to allow private insurance companies to run the government’s health care program for the poor in North Carolina.

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NC GOP Plan to Sabotage Raleigh’s Growth

With a diverse economy, temperate climate, and relatively low cost of living, Raleigh, and the surrounding Wake County, is viewed as one of the most desirable places to live in the nation; the region continually ends up on best-of lists. According to a Forbes magazine study that culled data from the 2010 census, Raleigh leads the nation in attracting young families, having experienced the biggest increase over the last 10 years in kids ages 5 to 17.

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How Much Does NC Actually Spend on k-12 Education?

In 2008, North Carolina spent $7,714,429,569 on K-12 public education. (This was the last budget before the recession began). Adjusted for inflation (8.5 percent) and a growing student population that has been increased by 34,000 students, 2014 education appropriations are more than a half billion dollars less than in 2008. Adjusting for inflation, official figures from the North Carolina Department of Instruction show that annual per student spending has declined from $6,270 to $5,488. North Carolina teachers have seen a 15.7 per cent income decline in real income over the last decade — the greatest in the nation — and North Carolina has plummeted from 27th to 46th in teacher pay. Mississippi is now the only Southeastern state with lower salaries than North Carolina.

— Rep. Goodman of Rockingham represents District 66, which includes the counties of Hoke, Montgomery, Richmond, Robeson and Scotland. He can be reached at, or by calling 919-733-5823.