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Fanjul resigns as Smart Start president

Stephanie Fanjul is resigning as president of the N.C. Partnership for Children, the umbrella group that oversees the early childhood health and education program Smart Start.

The Partnership for Children said Fanjul's resignation was announced at a board of directors meeting Friday. She had been president since 2007. The date of Fanjul's departure has not been determined.

"I am grateful for my time as President of NCPC, " Fanjul said in a statement. "Together, with the Board, staff and Local Partnerships, we have accomplished a great deal for children and families across North Carolina and have continued to build a strong organization that is recognized as a national model. I am proud of where we are today and have decided that it is time for me to explore new opportunities and see how else I can contribute to improving our communities."

Morning Memo: 'Moral Mondays' grow; McCrory defends pay hikes

’MORAL MONDAY’ PROTESTS EXPAND: Moral Monday, the North Carolina protest movement that comes to Charlotte on Monday afternoon, was organized to counter the policies of the Republican-controlled General Assembly.The protests, which have received national attention, are not only grounded in religion but expanding their reach into churches. Organizers say they seek to reclaim the language of political morality.

Protesters from the Charlotte area are to gather in Marshall Park at 5 p.m. Elsewhere in the state, similar protests are scheduled Monday in the Yancey County town of Burnsville and in coastal Manteo. Read more here.

GOV. HUNT TELLS DEMOCRATS TO DO MORE: Former Gov. Jim Hunt delivered a pep talk to grassroots leaders of the state’s beleaguered Democratic Party on Saturday night, where he emphasized the basics of winning elections. Hunt told the crowd at a reception named partly in his honor to appeal to independent voters, run good candidates and raise money. "We’re not exactly the party of money," Hunt said, "but we can do more than we’ve done."

***Hear more from the Democratic Party meeting and get the latest N.C. political news below in the Dome Morning Memo.***

Pols say good-bye lobbying legend Zeb Alley

A crowd of hundreds of veteran pols gave legendary lobbyist Zeb Alley a send off Wednesday night in Raleigh.

Among the overflow crowd who showed up for a "celebration of life" for Alley at the NC State University Club were former Democratic Governors Jim Hunt and Bev Perdue, Republican Senate leader Phil Berger, Senate Rules Chairman Tom Apodoca, former Congressman Bob Etheridge, Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin, and former Secretary of State Rufus Edmisten.

Zeb Alley, former state senator and longtime lobbyist, dies

Zeb Alley, a former state senator and later the state's most powerful lobbyist, died Thursday. He was 84.

House Speaker Thom Tillis announced the news, saying Alley died shortly after 9 a.m. He did not disclose a cause of death. The Senate adjourned Thursday in his memory.

Alley spent more than four decades working the halls at the statehouse in Raleigh, beginning with his election to the state Senate in 1970. He worked until his death as a lobbyist for Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, though his practice was much less robust in recent years.

A prominent Democrat, Alley served one term before becoming commissioner of the N.C. Courts Commission. He later served as a member of the N.C. Board of Alochol Control for three years until becoming then-Gov. Jim Hunt's lobbyist in 1980.

Morning Memo: Arrests near 500, Democrats debut anti-Tillis website

TOTAL ARRESTS NEAR 500: Eighty-four demonstrators were arrested by the N.C. General Assembly police on Monday, bringing the total since April 29 to more than 480. Holly Jordan, 29, a teacher at Hillside High School in Durham, said she decided to get arrested on Monday because she was thoroughly upset with the education policies and budgets proposed. She knew that some of the Republicans had described their naysayers as “aging hippies” and “outsiders” who considered it “en vogue” to get arrested.

TODAY AT THE STATEHOUSE: The Senate will take a final vote on its tax plan, and send it to the House. The two chambers remain far apart on how to cut taxes. The House will consider Gov. Pat McCrory's transportation funding bill. In committees, House lawmakers will consider a bill to raise the speed limit to 75 mph on certain roads and a bill requiring cursive -- which is likely to be remade entirely at the last minute, given a similar bill passed earlier this session. Senate lawmakers will meet in committees to consider a bill requiring background checks on those who receive some public assistance and another measure to roll back energy efficiency regulations on building to 2009 levels.

Gov. Pat McCrory will visit another rotary club, this time in Winston-Salem, before meeting with unidentified business leaders in a private meeting at Womble Carlyle, a law firm that also has a lobbying practice.

***Below in the Dome Morning Memo -- U.S. Senate race news, remember Jim Holshouser and a legislative roundup.***

Garrett Perdue leaves Womble

Garrett Perdue, the son of former Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue, has left Womble Caryle, the state's largest law firm.

Perdue joined Womble in January 2009, a month after his mother was elected governor. He was recruited into the firm by former Democratic Gov. Jim Hunt, to work in economic development.

The hiring raised some eyebrows because of the potential for conflict of interest.

Perdue, an attorney who had previously worked as an associate at Womble, stayed at Womble through his mother's four-year term and during the first four months of Republican Gov. Pat McCrory's administration.

He left in April to become managing director of Perdue Global Market Networks Inc.

Morning Memo: Pray-in targets lawmakers, Foxx to join Obama administration

CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE AT LEGISLATURE: Clergy and students will participate in an act of civil disobedience Monday at the Legislative Building "in response to the collective acts of the legislature," said the Rev. William Barber, president of the state NAACP. The action, from 5 p.m.- 6 p.m., will be a "form of a pray-in," Barber said. The House convenes at 4 p.m., the Senate at 7 p.m. The NAACP has opposed the legislative actions reducing unemployment benefits, state House approval of photo voter ID, and other legislative measures.

FOXX TO TAKE OBAMA POST: President Barack Obama on Monday will nominate Mayor Anthony Foxx to be secretary of transportation, a White House official said Sunday on the condition of anonymity. The nomination of Foxx, whose city hosted last year’s Democratic National Convention, would make him the only African-American selected for a Cabinet opening in Obama’s second term. (More below.)

***Good morning. Welcome to the Dome Morning Memo -- a full roundup of North Carolina political news and analysis below. ***

Morning Memo: Voter ID legislation takes stage after crazy day at legislature

VOTER ID DUEL STARTS THE DAY: Democratic leaders frame the day with a 9:45 a.m. press conference about recent election legislation, from curtailing early voting to voter ID measures, but it better not take too long because House Speaker Thom Tillis will take the same podium at 10:30 a.m. A Republican announcement of a voter ID bill is possible given next week's Elections Committee hearing seeking public comment on the issue.

GOP FLOODGATES OPEN: Voter ID joins a long list of other major policy changes blossoming at the same time in the middle of this legislative session. Let's try to put it in one sentence: With voter ID, the House is launching the most politically volatile issue of the session at the same time Senate Republicans explore a major income tax overhaul that would redefine who carries the burden of the state's tax system and Gov. Pat McCrory readies a long list of policies to reverse course on Democratic rule for the past 20 years, starting with his Medicaid overhaul and state budget proposal, while other lawmakers push plenty of smaller but equally major bills to create a separate governing system for charter schools, repeal the state's renewable energy credits, support gun ownership, restart the death penalty, legalize some sweepstakes, put restrictions on those seeking public assistance, consider an Arizona-styled immigration checks and establish a resolution that says N.C. towns and cities can set an official religion. All this arose in various ways in a single day. When's sine die?

***Don't miss today's Dome Morning Memo -- a recap of news and analysis from a big day at the statehouse. More below. Send news and tips to dome@newsobserver.com.***

Betty McCain, long-time Democratic power, honored

Betty Ray McCain, one of the most influential women in Tar Heel politics and one of the true few wits, was honored Tuesday in Raleigh.

McCain was honored at a reception at the North Carolina Museum of History and then was interviewed in the auditorium by broadcaster Tom Campbell for future broadcast.

The Wilson County resident is a long-time ally and neighbor of former Gov. Jim Hunt, having served as state Democratic Party chairman and as cultural resources secretary.

About 100 people attended the event including Reps. Nathan Baskerville, Jean Farmer-Butterfield, Susan Fisher, Rosa Gill, Ken Goodman, Yvonne Holley, Pat Hurley, Jonathan Jordan, Susan Martin, Joe Tolson, Rena Turner, Chris Whitmire, Chad Barefoot, Bill Cook and Joel D.M. Ford.

Morning Memo: Manufacturing in the spotlight; what will Obama tell NC

TODAY IN POLITICS: The role of manufacturing in the state and how to revive the state's old economy takes center stage Monday and Tuesday at the Emerging Issues forum in Raleigh. The conference is hosted by former Gov. Jim Hunt. U.S. Sens. Kay Hagan and Richard Burr will brief the audience Monday morning. And Gov. Pat McCrory will attend a lunch and award ceremony Tuesday. Other top N.C. officials will take part throughout the event.

In the legislature, the House and Senate convene at 6 p.m. for skeleton sessions. The real action starts Tuesday when budget committees begin to meet in public. A House committee will consider the controversial Medicaid bill Tuesday, as the full Senate considers a measure to curtail unemployment benefits. McCrory has no public events Monday, but he speaks to N.C. Department of Natural Resources employees Monday morning.

***Welcome to the Dome Morning Memo, the source for political news in North Carolina. Much more below. ***

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