Morning News Briefs: Thursday, February 7th, 2019
BB&T, SunTrust Combining In $66 Billion All-Stock Deal
Southern regional banks BB&T and SunTrust are combining in an all-stock deal valued at about $66 billion.
The banks said Thursday that the company will be the sixth-largest U.S. bank based on assets and deposits.
The combined company will be based in Charlotte, with its board and management evenly split between BB&T Corp. and SunTrust Banks Inc. A new name will be chosen before the deal closes in the fourth quarter.
The company will keep a community banking center in Winston-Salem, where BB&T is currently based.
Cooper Talks Climate Change On Capitol Hill
Gov. Roy Cooper says the federal government must step up and again be a leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and addressing the effects of climate change.
Cooper testified Wednesday before the House Committee on Natural Resources on Capitol Hill with Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and others. Cooper talked about global warming concerns after massive hurricanes Matthew and Florence struck the state, causing tens of billions of dollars in damage and hurting the economy.
Cooper said he is also unhappy with President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. Cooper signed an executive order last fall setting a goal to cut North Carolina greenhouse gases by 40 percent before 2025, compared to 2005. And he and Baker are among 20 governors participating in a state alliance committed to meeting the Paris agreement goals.
Millions Of North Carolina Voting Records Sought, Hundreds Given
North Carolina officials are turning over almost 800 voter files sought by a federal investigation that last year demanded millions of records.
The state elections board said Wednesday it is responding to grand jury subpoenas by providing records for 289 people who previously registered to vote in eastern North Carolina and another 500 people outside the region.
The state board had called the subpoenas served on it and 44 county elections boards by Raleigh-based federal prosecutors overly broad. The board estimated those requests for ballots, poll books, registration applications and other documents totaled more than 20 million records.
Federal prosecutors also demanded eight years of voter registration applications from the state Division of Motor Vehicles since 2010 from foreign-born applicants and from non-U.S. citizens completed in a foreign language.
Governor Rescinds Appointment To Civil Rights Board
Gov. Roy Cooper has cancelled a city councilwoman's appointment to a state civil rights panel the day after Republican legislators criticized his pick because of her tweet comparing law enforcement officers to terrorists.
Cooper's lawyer wrote Charlotte council member LaWana Mayfield on Wednesday telling her the governor rescinded her state Human Relations Commission appointment so the commission's work can "continue without distraction from its mission."
Mayfield wrote last year that being black in the U.S. under President Donald Trump "has created homegrown terrorist (sic) wearing blue uniforms."
On Tuesday, state Senate Republicans asked Cooper to withdraw Mayfield's appointment, saying it raised questions about the administration's stance toward police.
Greensboro Is eBay's New Site For 'Retail Revival' Initiative
The city of Greensboro is entering into a new partnership with eBay, and the goal is to help local businesses reach new customers around the world.
The project is called Retail Revival, and Greensboro is the third city in the U.S. chosen to participate. The others are Akron, Ohio and Lansing, Michigan.
It’s a free 12-month program for up to 100 local small and medium-sized businesses geared towards bringing their products to a global market. The application for Retail Revival is available online. Participating businesses will be announced in late March.
With Statue Gone, Interim UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Named
An interim chancellor has been named for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where the previous campus leader left during the controversy over the removal of a Confederate statue.
UNC's interim president, Bill Roper, said Wednesday that Kevin Guskiewicz will serve as interim chancellor. As dean of the College of Arts and Sciences since January 2016, Guskiewicz has led the largest academic institution at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Guskiewicz replaces Carol Folt, who left Jan. 31.