Better Governing Now » Naughty & Nice List 2015


Naughty & Nice List 2015

    Publisher's note: This post, by demidowdy, was originally published in the Ideas, and Issues sections of Civitas's online edition.

    Here's our list of who we think has been naughty and nice this year...

    NAUGHTY: Former SEANC head Dana Cope, convicted of stealing more than half a million dollars from the organization over 15 years.

    NICE: Gov. Pat McCrory for trying to protect the people of North Carolina by asking the feds to stop sending Syrian refugees to NC.

    NAUGHTY: Big Solar lobbyists and legislators who colluded to defend renewable energy mandates and tax credits that force consumers to pay more for inefficient energy while lining the pockets of big companies.

    NICE: The lawmakers who finally took a stand and allowed the solar tax credits to expire at the end of the year.

    NAUGHTY: the 115 (or more) NC state and local government employees whose work email addresses were released in the hack of the Ashley Madison website, as revealed by NC Capitol Connection. The website caters to married people looking to cheat on their spouses - raising questions about what public employees were doing with taxpayer-funded equipment while collecting taxpayer-funded paychecks.

    NICE: Retiring Sen. Bob Rucho for fighting for tax reform and fiscal responsibility in the legislature.

    NAUGHTY: The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and other unions for funneling millions of dollars to the Moral Monday movement and its backers. Do hard-working union members really want their dues to go to radicals and leftists?

    NICE: The 31 state senators who voted in favor of SB 607 - the Taxpayer Protection Act. This bill would have put to a vote amendments to the state constitution limiting the annual growth rate of the state budget and creating a new 5% maximum on the state income tax rate.

    NAUGHTY: The state House of Representatives, for failing to pass the Taxpayer Protection Act.

    NICE: The Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (recently renamed the Department of Environmental Quality, or DEQ) for standing up against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and its power grab via the Clean Power Plant rule.

    NAUGHTY: That same DEQ for giving the green light to Spanish wind developer Iberdrola to build massive wind turbines free from the legislatively enacted requirements of state law. Local residents are concerned that the lack of supervision essentially cuts them out of the process and deprives them of protection from the project's ill effects.

    North Carolina has its fair share of both!

    NICE: The North Carolina Supreme Court for upholding the state's Opportunity Scholarship Program (OSP) as constitutional. The 4-3 decision ensured that more children across the state can enjoy access to quality educational opportunities.

    NAUGHTY: The City of Belmont for trying to keep secret a $100,000 investigation of its police department, which led to the firing of the police chief as well as numerous other changes. The city claims it doesn't have to release the 160-page report. The Civitas Institute Center for Law and Freedom has filed suit, alleging that the report is a public record subject to disclosure.

    NICE: Attorney Matthew Bryant of Winston-Salem has led the charge through state courts challenging the Department of Transportation's unconstitutional use of the "Map Act." DOT has misused the law to designate "transportation corridors" within which homeowners do not enjoy the full value or use of their property.

    NAUGHTY: The Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation for its continued nurturing of the radical Left in North Carolina with its funding and support of a statewide web of activist groups, as documented in our Mapping the Left website.

    NICE: Dale Folwell, who recently left his post as head of the state Division of Employment Security. He helped institute reforms that cut down on fraud, while making the agency more responsive to people who have lost their jobs. Folwell also oversaw the early repayment of more than $2.5 billion in debt to the federal government, leading to massive tax relief for employers.

    NAUGHTY: the North Carolina Association of Educators for dragging its feet at supplying membership data to state auditors. The NCAE union must have at least 40,000 members to retain its valuable automatic dues-checkoff option on teachers' paychecks. So why has the organization moved so slowly to have its membership verified?

    NICE: North Carolina state lawmakers, for voting to defund Planned Parenthood in our state, and Gov. Pat McCrory for signing the bill to defund.

    EXTRA NICE: All the people across North Carolina who support the work of the Civitas Institute!

    This and other informative articles appear in the December edition of NC Capitol Connection...

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