Policy Watch Investigates

Policy Watch Investigates

Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Silent Sam’s future still uncertain; UNC Board demands plan from Folt, trustees by Nov. 15

A week after protesters toppled the only Confederate monument on a UNC campus, the fate of Silent Sam is still uncertain. The UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees and the UNC Board of Governors held overlapping special meetings Tuesday, a week after protesters tore the statue down.

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Two days after protesters tear down Silent Sam, state commission balks at removing Raleigh Confederate monuments

Two days after protesters forcefully removed the "Silent Sam" statue in Chapel Hill, a dramatic scene that fetched jeers from many state leaders and cheers from long-time Confederate statue critics, members of a key state commission voted against the removal of three similar monuments to Confederate soldiers in downtown Raleigh.

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

N.C. Historical Commission member on ‘Silent Sam’: Deal with injustice in face of unjust laws

On Wednesday the North Carolina Historical Commission's Confederate Monument Study Committee will meet. It will give its recommendation on whether to remove three Confederate monuments in downtown Raleigh. The full commission will then vote on the issue.

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

ICE on campus? UNC reps mum, faculty concerned re: email warnings

The emails began going out at the University of North Carolina earlier this summer. Warnings that federal and state agents might be visiting campus to ask questions about immigration, export control, compliance with applicable laws and national security issues. “I had a briefing today...

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Defending Democracy Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Policy Watch “Crucial Conversation” panel decries six constitutional amendments on the ballot

At a standing-room only gathering to discuss the six proposed amendments to the North Carolina constitution Wednesday, Gerry Cohen had a simple summation of the Republican-controlled legislature's message to Democrats. "You can win the governorship and the state Supreme Court," Cohen said the message went. “But we'll make it worthless for you."

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Defending Democracy Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

State commission explains two constitutional amendments; punts on four more as they await court hearing

Members of a key state commission on Monday fleshed out descriptions for two of the six controversial constitutional amendments on the ballot this fall. Yet the Constitutional Amendments Publication Commission, which is tasked with crafting succinct...

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

UNC Alumni on Confederate statue stagnation – “We deserve better.”

When Dr. Nora Dennis spoke before the UNC Board of Governors last week, her palpable frustration was shared by many UNC alumni.

Dennis, now a physician and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at Duke University, was a Morehead Scholar who graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2001.

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

New UNC Board of Governors chairman holds his fire at first meeting in charge

As Harry Smith opened Thursday’s UNC Board of Governors meeting – the first since he took over as chairman – he struck a conciliatory tone even as he doubled down on conservative changes he’s championed for the system.

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Plea deal offers glimpse into rampant bail industry fraud

When Sarah Jessenia Lopez plead guilty last month to attempted notary fraud related to bail bonding, it was not earth shattering. After all, fraud and criminality in North Carolina’s for-profit bail industry has been rampant for years.

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Defending Democracy Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Not final yet: Trio of state officials must still agree on ballot language for proposed constitutional amendments

Lack of implementing language in amendment legislation raises additional concerns When the General Assembly’s legislative session closed last week, six amendments to the state constitution had been approved for November’s ballot.

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Defending Democracy Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Local election officials detail problems with controversial early voting bill

Viola Williams has been crunching numbers and working out possible solutions since last week, when the General Assembly fast-tracked a controversial bill that makes sweeping changes to early voting.

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Defending Democracy Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Allegations of sexism, partisanship follow local election board’s disqualification of Berger challenger

On May 25, the news headlines read that Democratic state Senate candidate Jen Mangrum had been disqualified from her bid to unseat Sen. Phil Berger, arguably the most powerful state lawmaker in North Carolina. Republicans had challenged Mangrum’s residency in Berger’s district near the Virginia line, and a panel of election officials from Berger’s Senate District 30 voted on party lines to oust Mangrum...

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

As the legislative session winds down, Democrats seek a compromise for storing “Silent Sam”

A new bill to relocate the “Silent Sam” Confederate monument on UNC’s flagship Chapel Hill campus aims to be a compromise in the contentious, decades-long fight over the statue.

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Monday numbers: A closer look at the need to expand NC’s existing hate crime laws

As LGBTQ advocates face an uphill battle to expand North Carolina’s existing Hate Crime laws this legislative session, they do so against a backdrop of increased violence against lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

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Amid anti-LGBTQ violence, N.C. Democrats seek expansion of state hate crimes law

Last week Democratic lawmakers filed a bill to expand existing hate crimes statutes to cover lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Filed by Senators Jay Chaudhuri (D-Wake) and Valerie Foushee (D-Orange), Senate Bill 794 would add sexual orientation, ...
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The politics of “pork”

Much has been written this week about the process of the secretly-crafted $23.9 billion budget unveiled by the General Assembly’s GOP majority Monday night.

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