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Veteran Democratic senator considering bid for Charlotte City Council

Veteran North Carolina Sen. Dan Clodfelter may return to where his political career began -- the Charlotte City Council. "I've given some thought to it," he said in his legislative office Wednesday. "I think there are some important decisions facing the city and they're of interest and concern to me."

Clodfelter would run for one of four at-large seats, all now held by fellow Democrats. He's said he's been asked to run by "a fairly wide range of people," though he declined to say who.

Clodfelter, who served on council from 1987-1993, was once one of the most influential members of the Senate, even chairing the Finance Committee. Like other Democrats, he's seen that influence wane since Republicans took control after the 2010 elections.

He says that's not the reason he's considering a run for council. "If I were to decide to (run), it would not be about that," he said. Filing for the November council election opens in July. --Jim Morrill, Observer staff writer

Legislators urge strict review of proposed contracts

Legislators want a new look at how the state reviews and approves contracts after a state audit of four Health and Human Services contracts found problems with three of them.

Contracts with IBM, SAS and Public Consulting Group, which provide computer software or services to identify Medicaid provider fraud, recipient fraud, or provider overpayments, had problems, the audit found.

Legislators  said Wednesday they didn't like the terms of the initial contract with IBM, which paid the company based a percentage of Medicaid payments that the software indicated were improper and should be recovered.

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