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State Government
Cooper Proposes 3-Pronged Plan To Repeal HB2 PDF Print E-mail
State Government
By Donna Martinez   
Tuesday, 14 February 2017 11:19
Governor Roy Cooper has proposed a three pronged proposal to repeal House Bill , the legislation that requires transgenders to use the public bathrooms of their biology and not their gender identity. However, HB2 created such a backlash that the NBA pulled this year's All-Star weekend from Charlotte and the ACC pulled its championship games from North Carolina. The NCAA followed suit and Cooper mentioned in a news conference that the state may lose the NCAA championship venues for up to six years if HB2 is not repealed soon. Cooper was joined by Senate Minority Leader Dan Blue and House Minority Leader Darren Jackson, both of Wake County. 
 
Cooper's proposal would:
  • Repeal HB2
  • Toughen penalties for sexual crimes committed in bathrooms and dressing rooms.
  • Force local governments to give 30 days’ notice before it votes on nondiscrimination ordinances, similar to the Charlotte ordinance that spawned HB2
Cooper said he wanted an HB2 resolution by the end of the month to preserve the 133 bids North Carolina communities have into the NCAA to host championship venues. The governor said these bids could bring up to $500 million of local economic impact to the state.
 
 
Blue Cross Blue Shield Head Announces Retirement PDF Print E-mail
State Government
By Administrator   
Monday, 13 February 2017 17:01
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina  President and CEO Brad Wilson announced today that he will retire from the company later this year.  Wilson started working at Blue Cross in 1996 and has served as President and CEO since 2010, leading the company through a period of rapid change in the health care industry. 
 
“It’s been a privilege to work for a company that has been helping North Carolinians live healthier for the past 84 years,” said Wilson.  “Now is a good time to transition leadership to the next CEO – one who will lead Blue Cross through the next wave of health care reform just as I have been fortunate to do for the last seven years.  I will work closely with the Board of Trustees to establish a timeline that ensures a smooth transition.”
 
"The Board of Trustees greatly appreciates Brad's 20-year career of service to Blue Cross and his leadership as President and CEO during this period of transformation in health care and health insurance.  As a reflection of his leadership, Blue Cross is well positioned to continue to serve North Carolina and represent our state's interests in the rapidly-evolving health care industry," said Board of Trustees Chair Frank Holding, Jr.  Holding said the Board will conduct a comprehensive search for the company’s next CEO, considering both internal and external candidates.
 
Over the past seven years, the company has helped the state begin the transition to value based care, so that health care costs are more focused on the quality of care rather than quantity of tests.  Blue Cross’ bundled payments for orthopedic procedures reduce costs by up to 30% and improve outcomes, and the company has collaborated with hospitals across North Carolina to include quality of care incentives in every hospital contract. 
 
Since 2010, Blue Cross also has increased its focus on healthy living, launching Get Outside North Carolina, HIKE NC! and Nourishing North Carolina initiatives.  As Chair of the separate and independent Blue Cross and Blue Cross Shield of North Carolina Foundation, Wilson has overseen more than $113 million in grants touching all 100 counties in North Carolina.
 
“I’m proud of the commitment our company, Foundation and Blue Cross employees demonstrate every day,” added Wilson.  “From serving North Carolinians with care and compassion, to investing in healthy living and improving access to care, our company and Foundation work hard to fulfill their mission to improve the health and well-being of our customers and communities.  I know that commitment will continue for years to come."
 
Bill Would Provide Small Businesses With Tax Break PDF Print E-mail
State Government
By Administrator   
Monday, 13 February 2017 15:25
Representative Kyle Hall filed legislation that would allow small businesses to deduct their first $50,000 of income.
 
Joining Rep. Hall as primary sponsors of House Bill 61 are House Finance Senior Chairman Jason Saine (R-Lincoln), Reps. Brenden Jones (R-Columbus) and Beverly Boswell (R-Dare).
 
Chairman Saine released the following statement:
 
“I’m proud to be a sponsor of this legislation with Representative Hall. Small businesses across the state are truly the life blood of what continues to make our economy successful. This reinvestment demonstrates our continued commitment to our state’s greatest job providers.”
 
House Bill 61 reinstates the income tax benefit for businesses providing that the first $50,000 of net business income is deductible. The act applies to those businesses with $1 million of net business income per year or less, ensuring that our state’s smallest businesses receive this needed relief.
 
Report - NC Tops In IT Employment Growth PDF Print E-mail
State Government
By Administrator   
Monday, 13 February 2017 15:21
The N.C. Technology Association’s 2017 ‘State of Technology’ report ranked North Carolina No. 1 in the United States for IT employment growth and the percentage of women in the sector’s workforce.
 
The report compares tech job trends across the United States between 2010 and 2015, ranking North Carolina according to key metrics such as IT occupations, infrastructure and educational opportunities.
 
Rep. Jason Saine, Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee on Information Technology, released a statement:
 
“North Carolina ranking No. 1 for IT employment growth is no fluke – we are attracting innovators and technology companies thanks to corporate and personal income tax relief, as well as regulatory reforms that make our state more competitive under conservative leadership in the General Assembly.”
 
“In such an exciting time for North Carolina’s economy, state lawmakers must continue to find ways to create opportunities for long-term growth in the critical sector of technology jobs.  I’m proud our state is emerging as a leader in IT opportunities and offers our growing population quality employment in this key industry. 
 
“I look forward to finding ways to maintain North Carolina’s top-tier tech ranking through streamlined tax and regulatory reforms that get government out of the way so our businesses can continue to thrive.”
 
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