Morning News Briefs: Wednesday, September 11th, 2019
GOP's Bishop, Murphy Win NC Special Election
Conservative Republican Dan Bishop has won a special election for an open House seat in North Carolina, averting a demoralizing Democratic capture of a district the GOP has held for nearly six decades.
In the day's other special election, Republican Greg Murphy, a doctor and state legislator, defeated Democrat Allen Thomas — as expected — to keep a House district along North Carolina's Atlantic coast.
That seat has been vacant since February when 13-term GOP Rep. Walter Jones died, and Trump won the district handily in 2016.
Remap Transparency Order Means Live Video, Lottery Machine
A court-ordered directive for more openness in North Carolina redistricting is leading to actions directed at improving public access and transparency.
The state House and Senate redistricting committees on Tuesday started live-streaming their meetings, where they are working to meet a Sept. 18 deadline that state judges set to enact new boundaries. The judges last week declared district maps approved in 2017 violated the state constitution by injecting boundaries with extreme partisan bias to favor Republicans. They ordered the remapping must be conducted "in full public view."
The Senate also has brought in a state lottery machine with ping-pong balls inside to pick certain maps at random, in keeping with transparency.
IFB Solutions Files Petition With Supreme Court In Effort To Save Jobs
A local nonprofit that provides employment and training for people who are blind or visually impaired is fighting to keep jobs. IFB Solutions is set to lose over 100 positions after the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs announced it would end three optical contracts with the agency.
The company has made eyeglasses for the VA for the past two decades.
But a court ruling in 2018 sided with small veteran-owned businesses over AbilityOne nonprofits that employ those who are blind or have significant disabilities when it comes to VA contracts.
Dan Kelly is Chief Operating Officer for IFB Solutions. He says they’re taking their fight to the Supreme Court.
Council Determines Timeline For Dixie Classic Fair Name Change
The debate continues over a new name for the Dixie Classic Fair. But city officials have determined when the change would go into effect.
A city council committee didn’t move forward with a resolution Tuesday to change the name of the Dixie Classic Fair to the Twin City Classic Fair. Many people at the meeting said it should have a broader scope than just city limits. But Winston-Salem City Councilman Dan Besse confirmed that the name change will take effect with the 2020 fair.
2 Found Guilty Of Vandalizing Monument To Black Workers
Two people accused of vandalizing a memorial to enslaved and free black workers who built UNC-Chapel Hill have been ordered to pay fines and perform community service.
The News & Observer reports 31-year-old Ryan Francis Barnett of Sanford and 50-year-old Nancy Rushton McCorkle of Newberry, South Carolina, were found guilty of injury to real property and larceny, both misdemeanors.
An Orange County judge sentenced Barnett and McCorkle to 200 hours of community service, 18 months of unsupervised probation and a $500 fine.
The two were accused of marking the Unsung Founders Memorial in March with what the school's interim chancellor said was "racist language."