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Morning Roundup: State will give museum prime land, N.C. ranks 33 in health

The state will give the N.C. Museum of Art prime real estate around the old smokestake on Blue Ridge Road for multi-use development.

Federal funding is cut for the proposed "red route" six-lane toll road across southern Wake County.

What does the Cultural Resources Secretary do?

Leads cultural outreach and historical preservation programs around the state.

Leads cultural outreach and historical preservation programs around the state.

As head of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources, the governor-appointed secretary oversees the State Historic Preservation Office, the State Library, state museums of history and art and the State Archives.

Other divisions include the State Records Center, the Office of State Archeology, the Historical Publications Section, the N.C. Arts Council, the N.C. Symphony, seven state history museums and 27 historic sites.

It is one of 10 Cabinet-level positions in North Carolina.

The department typically has the smallest budget in the Cabinet. In 2007-08, its $82.1 million budget was $26 million less than the Department of Administration, the next smallest budget.

In 2008, the department of 706 employees. The secretary's salary was $117,142.

The Cultural Resources department was created in 1971 under the administration of Gov. Bob Scott, although its Offices of Archives and History dates to 1903.

North Carolina was the first state to raise an arts and culture department to Cabinet level. Six of the seven secretaries since the post was created have been women: Grace Rohrer, Sara Hodgkins, Patric Dorsey, Betty Ray McCain, Libba Evans and current Secretary Linda Carlisle.

Starting in May of 2008, Evans went on unpaid leave to attend to unspecified personal business and never returned. That led some legislators to suggest abolishing the department and putting some of its divisions under the responsibility of the Commerce secretary.

The department is outlined in general statutes under Article 2 of G.S. 143B.

Daughtridge raised $244k by end of June

Bill DaughtridgeBill Daughtridge received $244,348 in contributions by the end of June.

The Republican nominee for state treasurer received $48,703 in the second quarter of the year, according to his most recent campaign finance report.

Major donors included Cary attorney Brent Barringer, Rocky Mount businessman Nick Boddie, Raleigh Realtor Carolyn Grant, Greenville businessman Julian White Rawl, Golden Corral President Billy Sewell and N.C. Museum of Art Director Larry Wheeler.

He also received money from the N.C. Utility Contractors PAC and the N.C. Petroleum and Convenience Marketers PAC.

At the same time, he spent $44,788, leaving him with $74,152 in cash on hand.

Stevens: Senate budget was conservative

State Sen. Richard Stevens of Cary was one of three Republicans to support the Senate's $21.4 billion state budget proposal.

He said he disliked the way Democrats shut off debate on the legislation, but he voted for it because it contains no tax increases and the growth in spending over the current year — 3.4 percent — is less than that of inflation and population growth combined, Dan Kane reports.

"It's a conservative budget in terms of spending and it does a lot for education," Stevens said.

He also cited $50 million in tax relief, though the budget bill does not specify where that will happen. The Senate decided to pass several tax breaks in individual bills that may end up being incorporated into the final budget.

He said he was also pleased with the number of construction projects that the budget bill provides for the UNC system and for Wake County. They include $109 million for a new library at N.C. State University's Centennial Campus and another $5 million toward the N.C. Museum of Art's $72 million expansion.

Stevens is a former Wake County manager and a former chairman of the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees. The other Republican senators supporting the budget proposal are Stan Bingham of Davidson County and Fletcher Hartsell of Concord.

Daughtridge seeks $19m in state spending

Bill DaughtridgeRep. Bill Daughtridge is seeking nearly $19 million in state spending.

The Republican nominee for state treasurer has cosponsored six bills seeking appropriations in the upcoming state budget.

Among the larger appropriations bills he is cosponsoring: $6 million for the Communities in Schools dropout prevention program, $5.6 million for the N.C. Museum of Art, $3.2 million for a biotechnology research campus at Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, $2 million for the N.C. Arts Council and $2 million for a business incubator for homeland security and national defense.

He also cosponsored a bill for $100,000 to study the state Department of Public Instruction.

Daughtridge's Democratic opponent, state Sen. Janet Cowell, has sponsored and cosponsored bills seeking $76 million in appropriations. 

Both Daughtridge and Cowell are cosponsors on the dropout prevention program, the N.C. Museum of Art projects and the N.C. Arts Council funding, which would total $13.7 million in spending.

Cowell seeks $76m in state spending

Janet CowellSen. Janet Cowell is seeking nearly $76 million in state spending.

The Democratic nominee for state treasurer has sponsored one bill and co-sponsored 24 bills seeking appropriations in the upcoming state budget.

Cowell is the primary sponsor on a bill to give $2.1 million to the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences for an environmental education facility at the Prairie Ridge Ecostation.

Among the larger appropriations bills she is cosponsoring: $25 million for a school construction pilot program, $6 million for the Communities in Schools programs on dropout prevention, $5.8 million for the Center for Bioenergy Technologies, $5.6 million for the N.C. Museum of Art, $5.6 million for dropout prevention, $5 million for a strategic plan on biofuels, $5 million for public libraries.

Other large appropriations she is cosponsoring: $4 million for a statewide study on aging, $2 million for the N.C. Arts Council, $1.6 million for a pilot program on dropout prevention in Durham and Vance counties, $1.5 million for a pilot program on adult protective services, $1.4 million for water resource management, $1.2 million for teen pregnancy prevention and $1.2 million for Wake Tech Community College.

She is also cosponsoring bills less than $1 million: Support for caregivers of people with dementia, a statewide literacy program, Kids Voting, treatment of autistic children, services for the developmentally disabled, a legal mediation network, a youth golfing program and the African-American Heritage Commission.

In addition, she is cosponsoring a bill that would give state employees a 7 percent raise.

Update: Her Republican opponent, Rep. Bill Daughtridge, is seeking $19 million in spending.

C.C. Mangum earned $42m on state roads

Fred Smith knows about roads first-hand.

The Republican gubernatorial candidate took over as chief executive officer of Raleigh-based paving company C.C. Mangum Co. in 2004.

He recently told Dome the company gets about 30 percent of its business from public contracts.

Since 2004, the state Department of Transportation has paid C.C. Mangum about $42.4 million for 16 completed and ongoing projects in Wake, Granville, Durham, Orange, Chatham and Johnston counties.

The most expensive project is still being finished. C.C. Mangum bid $35 million for work on N.C. 54 in Durham and Wake counties and has received about $15 million for work so far.

More after the jump.


Ellis to be honored

Tom Ellis will be honored next week in Raleigh.

Ellis, a Raleigh attorney who was chief architect of the Republican Party's rise in North Carolina, will receive the Freedom Leadership Award for at a dinner sponsored by Hillsdale College at the N.C. Museum of Art on Wednesday, Oct. 3.

As the chief strategist for former Sen. Jesse Helms and his political organization, the National Congressional Club, Ellis helped rescue the career of Ronald Reagan as well as elevate John East and Lauch Faircloth to the Senate, Rob Christensen reports.

Among the sponsors of the event are former Raleigh Mayor Tom Fetzer; John Hood, president of the John Locke Foundation; businessman Bob Luddy and philanthropist Assad Meymandi.

Larry P. Arnn, president of Hillsdale College, will speak.


State lottery director Tom Shaheen didn't just get a raise last week that keeps him at the top of the pay heap among non-university state employees.

He got a sustained, standing ovation from his bosses, the nine-member lottery commission, Andy Curliss reports.

Shaheen's salary will jump to $246,750 annually as of June 1, a 5 percent increase. He's also getting a one-time payment of $5,781 to make up for several months he had gone without a raise, commissioners said.

Among non-university employees (which include doctors and sports coaches), Shaheen's pay is second to N.C. Museum of Art Director Larry Wheeler, who has a state salary of $250,000, according to the State Personnel Office.

More after the jump.

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