As state legislators continue to hammer out the budget, citizens of all political persuasions are awaiting word on the fate of this region’s bustling film business. And that’s why this morning, a contingent of officials and residents from the Wilmington area gathered in Raleigh’s legislative building to plead with lawmakers to extend the current film incentive tax credits—instead of switching to a grant program, which they say would eliminate jobs. But rather than demonstrating film’s bona fides within the Cape Fear region, local lawmakers focused on its statewide benefits.
Senator Bill Rabon has represented North Carolina Senate District Eight since 2010--and he’s hoping to carry forth through another term. Rabon, a native of Columbus County and a current Southport veterinarian, recently told WHQR that he doesn’t want to stay in the Senate so long he wears out his welcome. However, the incumbent Republican says he’s proud of what he’s accomplished in terms of transportation and tax reform, and would like to see these matters—as well as initiatives related to job creation and education—through to completion.
Wilmington Ports Authority officials are working to boost storage capacity for niche products such as local produce, pork and wood pellets. Yesterday, Governor McCrory toured the port and announced he’ll work to make it competitive with neighboring port cities Savannah, Charleston and Norfolk. McCrory also announced plans to improve education.
Today is the last chance to pay the usual admission to movies, museums and cultural events. Effective New Year’s Day, the State General Assembly is imposing a 4.75% privilege tax on admission to such entertainment—which includes a host of nonprofit events.
Brunswick County is rolling out the welcome mat for two new manufacturing outfits this fall. Not only is Lee Controls, a metal manufacturer, moving from New Jersey into a 20,000-square-foot facility in Southport, but RTM Light USA, a surfboard manufacturing operation, will be setting up in a space within Brunswick Community College. This translates to roughly 70 new jobs.
Since Governor McCrory signed the Voter ID Bill into law on Monday, three civil rights groups have filed lawsuits. They challenge new requirements for state-issued IDs, elimination of same-day registration--and an early voting period that will be shortened by seven days. Critics of the bill say the latter in particular will cut off voting opportunities for hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians—particularly minorities. About 64 percent of New Hanover, Brunswick and Pender County citizens voted early in the 2012 election.
Although the North Carolina General Assembly has adjourned, the grassroots group, Women Organizing for Wilmington, or WOW, will maintain its weekly schedule of protesting against local legislators’ support of recent bills that would tighten restrictions on abortion. Despite passage of the controversial legislation in state House and Senate, local demonstrators say they’ll voice their discord until the next state elections.
"Shame on Goolsby! Shame on Goolsby! Shame on Goolsby!"