Morning Headlines: Thursday, August 27, 2015

Morning Headlines: Thursday, August 27, 2015

7:59am Aug 27, 2015
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Here are some of the stories we're following today:

Unemployment Bill Nears Passage

Legislation raising the bar on North Carolina unemployment benefit recipients to look for work and lowering a state tax on businesses sooner appears headed to Gov. Pat McCrory's desk.

The state Senate tentatively agreed Wednesday to changes made by the House to a bill that makes additional adjustments to the state's unemployment insurance system, which underwent a massive rewrite in 2013.

The bill raises the minimum number of weekly job contacts a displaced worker must make from two to five to keep qualifying for benefits.

The measure also would eliminate a state surcharge on employers several months earlier once an unemployment benefit reserve exceeds $1 billion.

Agreement Eases Path From Community College To Four-Year School

It's getting a little easier for North Carolina students to move from a community college to a four-year school.

The presidents of the state community college system and North Carolina's private universities association are to sign an agreement Thursday making it easier for students to transfer credits they've earned.

Twenty-one of North Carolina's 36 independent institutions have agreed to adopt the new standards. More could do so in the future.

About 2,000 community college students transfer to one of the independent higher education institutions each year.

Drug Maker Novo Nordisk Adding Nearly 700 Jobs At New Plant

Danish drug maker Novo Nordisk plans to build a North Carolina diabetes drug manufacturing plant that is projected to employ nearly 700 people.

Multiple media organizations reported Wednesday the drug maker would invest $1.2 billion in its planned factory near Clayton. In return, Novo Nordisk is being promised nearly $16 million in state tax breaks and plans for local taxpayers to buy its 95-acre factory site.

Davis Keynote Speaker At North Carolina Abortion-Rights Events

The Texas state senator whose 2013 floor filibuster against an abortion bill vaulted her to national prominence is in North Carolina raising money for a political group affiliated with Planned Parenthood.

Former Sen. Wendy Davis is delivering the keynote address at three fundraisers this week, with two slated Wednesday in Greensboro and Charlotte. The group called "Planned Parenthood Votes! South Atlantic" said 180 people attended Tuesday evening's event in Durham.

Tennis Tourney An Economic Boon For Winston-Salem

The Winston-Salem Open is among the last men’s tennis competitions before the U.S. Open, the Grand Slam event that begins Monday.

Five of the top 20 ranked men’s players are in town this week, and the city’s tourism bureau says they expect 40-thousand fans and four million dollars in economic benefits.

Richard Geiger, the president of Visit Winston-Salem, says there’s another benefit: hosting big competitions can lure new business to the city.

The Winston-Salem Open wraps up this Saturday.

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