Morning News Briefs: Tuesday, February 13th, 2018

Morning News Briefs: Tuesday, February 13th, 2018

5:58am Feb 13, 2018

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Several Hundred Candidates File On First Day

Most of the activity during the first day of candidate filing in North Carolina happened at county board offices across the state.

The state election board reports about 800 candidates had turned in their paperwork statewide as of late Monday afternoon. Barely 20 people had filed in the first two hours at the state office in Raleigh, which accepted filings for seats to Congress and for local district attorneys.

The 100 county board offices received applications for county positions and for the General Assembly. At the Wake County board, several incumbent House Democrats from the county turned in their candidate forms just as filing opened at noon. Also appearing in the first hour was GOP Rep. Nelson Dollar, the House budget committee's senior chairman.

State Strategic Plan Addresses Behavioral Health

A state agency has released a 90-page strategic plan to improve behavioral health services, including mental health, support for those with developmental disabilities, and substance abuse.

The document looks at the current behavioral health system in North Carolina and the challenges it faces – funding, access to care and workforce issues. It also provides a vision for moving forward and improving delivery of care.

Mark Benton with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services says a main point of focus is opioid abuse, which has become a nationwide epidemic.

Benton says the next step is to work with the committees in the General Assembly on legislation and funding moving forward.  

Beleaguered Gunmaker Remington Points To Bankruptcy Court

Remington, the gunmaker beset by falling sales and lawsuits tied to the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, has reached a financing deal that would allow it to continue operating as it files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

The maker of the Bushmaster AR-15-style rifle used in the Connecticut shooting that left 20 first-graders and six educators dead in 2012, said Monday that the agreement with lenders will reduce its debt by about $700 million and add about $145 million in new capital.

The company will attempt to file a prepackaged reorganization plan with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of Delaware under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code.

Police: Toddler Badly Hurt After Ambulance Hit By Car Dies

Police in Winston-Salem say the toddler who was badly hurt after an ambulance crash has died.

A news release from the Winston-Salem Police Department says it was informed just after 6 p.m. Monday that the boy had died at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. Authorities offered no additional details.

The boy was being taken to the hospital around 1 a.m. Sunday when a drunken driver hit the medical transport, causing it to roll over on its side, police said.

The boy's mother, Lyndsay Ann Oakes of Wise, was in the ambulance with him and suffered minor injuries.

Steve Martin Joins Merlefest Lineup

Comedian and musician Steve Martin will be performing in Wilkesboro in April with the Steep Canyon Rangers. It's the latest announcement regarding this year’s Merlefest music festival.

Martin is best known as a stand-up comedian and movie star, but he’s also played the banjo for decades. He often performs with the Grammy-winning bluegrass group The Steep Canyon Rangers, who recently joined the Winston-Salem Symphony in concert.

Martin was not part of that performance, but he has played locally. He previously performed with the Steep Canyon Rangers during Merlefest’s 2010 run.

The three-day festival on the campus of Wilkes Community College begins April 26. This year’s lineup also includes performances by Bela Fleck, Kris Kristofferson and Rhiannon Giddens.

Copyright 2018 WFDD. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.
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