Economists at the General Assembly and Gov. Pat McCrory's administration agree for now there will be a small shortfall this fiscal year relative to North Carolina's $21 billion state government budget.
They released a report Tuesday saying they anticipate the gap between actual and expected tax collections to be $271 million.
Senate Republicans say their bill to rework North Carolina's gasoline tax will provide a short-term break to motorists while making road-building revenues more stable. Opponents argue it's just a tax increase in disguise.
The full Senate meets Wednesday to debate and hold the first of two required votes on a measure that reformulates the tax.
First, the bill would reduce the gas tax from 37.5 cents per gallon to 35 cents starting March 1 through the rest of 2015. The tax floor would be 35 cents moving forward.
Listen Tuesday morning at 10 and Thursday evening at 8 for our broadcast of the Asheville Symphony's January 17th concert. The program includes a performance of one of the most famous works in the repertoire, Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. Also featured is the winning performance of the Sibelius Violin Concerto by Kyung Ah Oh, and the Overture to Sicilian Vespers by Giuseppe Verdi.
The North Carolina Democratic Party is promoting the party's No. 2 administrative leader to its top job heading into the critical 2016 elections.
Hundreds of party activists meeting Saturday at a Pittsboro high school elected Patsy Keever of Asheville as chair. She got a majority of the votes cast among the five seeking to succeed outgoing Chair Randy Voller.
Keever has been 1st vice chair since 2013. She's been a state House member, county commissioner and two-time congressional candidate.
Open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act ends this Sunday, February 15 at midnight. Last week the U.S. House of representatives, including 10th and 11th District Representative Patrick McHenry and Mark Meadows voted once again to repeal Obama Care and the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear another legal challenge. Health Care Navigator and Pisgah Legal Services attorney Jaclyn Kiger says through January 15th nearly 480,000 North Carolinians have enrolled in qualified ACA health insurance plans.
A bit of Broadway comes to Greenville, South Carolina. The Tony and Grammy-winning musical "Wicked" runs through February 15th at the Peace Center. The late, great Bob Marley would have been 70 this weekend. The music of the Reggae legend will be featured February 6th at Isis Restaurant and Music Hall. Jim Arrendell and his band will perform Marley classics. The progressive rock band Umphrey's McGee performs at the U.S. Cellular Center February 7th and Sheila Kay Adams and the Scofflaws will perform and tell stories at White Horse Black Mountain in Black Mountain February 7th.
There are 10-thousand public housing households across Western North Carolina. Recent data compiled by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development indicates that despite an increase in demand caused by the great recession, the number of public housing units in our region remained relatively unchanged.
Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are concerned about the growing number of measles cases and the possibility of the outbreak that began in California spreading to more and more states, including North Carolina. Dr. Jennifer Mullendore is Buncombe County Health and Human Services Medical Director. She spoke with David Hurand about the surprising number of parents in Western North Carolina who choose not to have their children get the measles vaccine and other preventable disease immunizations.