An aerial photograph showing the construction of the new I-85 bridge over the Yadkin River at the Davidson County and Rowan County lines. Credit: N.C. DOT, via Flickr.

The Charlotte Observer published a short piece on Gov. Bev Perdue’s and state transportation official’s press conference yesterday on recently-begun highway construction projects in and around the Charlotte-metro area. In particular, the governor focused on the widening of I-85 through Cabarrus County, the construction of northern junction of I-85 and I-485 and the completion of the final 5.7-mile leg of I-485 in northeast Charlotte.

The Charlotte-metro aren’t the only current interstate projects that will benefit the growing Queen City. A bit farther up I-85 and north of the already-widened portion in Rowan County, work crews are busy building a new bridge and roadway to both replace the decrepit Yadkin River bridge and widen the interstate.  Continue reading this post…

Go, Guvnah, Go! North Carolina’s GOP has shown their true colors this year, attacking the poor, LGBTs, students and immigrant communities. Shamelessness at its best. And, in all their time targeting the folks who have the weakest voices in Raleigh, they’ve yet to move the state forward on any job creation. Way to go, guys and gals. You’re proving your worthlessness all by yourself. I’m looking forward to a Republican minority again in 2012.

The deets, from N.C. Policy Watch:

This past week, in an out-of-the-blue announcement, the House Speaker and Senate President Pro Tem decreed that they would only allow passage of a mostly technical legislative change to extend the federally-funded unemployment benefits of around 37,000 jobless workers if Governor Perdue agreed ahead of time to the GOP’s proposed state spending levels for fiscal year 2012.

Got that? In order to short-circuit negotiations and force the Governor to agree now to a FY 2012 budget that slashes state spending by 13%, Republican leaders are willing to hold 37,000 families hostage and deny them their modest insurance benefits (on average, around $300 per week). The leaders combined the two unrelated topics into one bill, passed it in near-record time and now plan to deliver it to the Governor tomorrow – the day the unemployment benefits are scheduled to expire.

Except, Gov. Bev Perdue has announced she’ll be vetoing the bill. That’s prompted outcry from Republicans who say Perdue is “more committed to increased state spending than she is to helping the unemployed.”

Perdue’s spokesperson Chrissy Pearson fires back in an email to press:

Any suggestion that the governor is unwilling to work with General Assembly leaders is absolutely untrue. The ones who should be ashamed are the lawmakers who for weeks have had a clean bill to fix continue unemployment benefits. They did nothing. Thirty seven thousand people will suffer an end to their benefits for one simple reason: Republican leaders are more interested in winning than in doing what’s right.

This is unconscionable.

If the governor signed the bill, the door would open for thousands of teachers to lose their jobs. Children would lose health services. Mentally ill would have even fewer places to go for help. Public safety services would weaken. North Carolina would be set back decades.

This is the time for leadership, not games.

We are so sorry those 37,000 fellow North Carolinians are suffering because Republican leaders are only interested in themselves.