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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Issues, Special and Otherwise

Posted by on Wed, Jul 13, 2016 at 8:00 AM

click to enlarge screen_shot_2016-07-12_at_11.47.57_pm.png
Oh, hallo! It's Wednesday. News: 

1. Our special HB 2 issue is out today. You should read it. Start here, with Barry Yeoman's deep plunge into the law's origins. "The new law was not a bolt from nowhere," Yeoman writes. "It can be understood by examining the decades preceding its passage. If history is a river, then at least three distinct tributaries converged in Raleigh on March 23." You'll want to read on from there. 

2. Speaking of HB 2. The NBA's owners met Tuesday, and some expected the league's commissioner, Adam Silver, to make an announcement afterward on whether, in light of HB 2, the NBA would hold the 2017 All-Star game in Charlotte as planned. But Silver punted instead, telling reporters at a press conference "We’re not prepared to make a decision today. But we recognize the calendar is not our friend. February is quickly approaching, especially in terms of big events like the All-Star games if we’re going to make alternative plans.”

The Charlotte Observer further notes: 
Silver and other officials from the NBA and the Charlotte Hornets worked behind the scenes the past few months to lobby for major changes in the law, which requires people in public schools and government facilities to use restrooms that conform to the gender on their birth certificates.

...Multiple sources said the league would have to make a decision in the next few weeks on whether to move the All-Star Weekend to give the new host city minimal preparation time. Silver acknowledged during his news conference before Game 1 of the NBA Finals that the NBA had begun investigating alternative cities should the league move the event.
Silver added that he had hoped the legislature's short session would bring about changes to the law. “We were waiting for the legislative session (to play out), and we were frankly hoping they’d make some steps in changing the legislation. And frankly I was disappointed they didn’t. We’re being extremely cautious and judicious in making this decision.”

3. Suspicious death in Morrisville. A sixty-six-year-old woman was found dead in a neighborhood pool in Morrisville yesterday. Authorities are calling it "suspicious." More from WNCN
A maintenance worker found the body of Anna Sun Clark, 66, around 8 a.m. Tuesday in the pool in the 1300 block of Mason Farm Road and called authorities.

Clark, of Jadewood Drive was dead when emergency responders arrived.

Clark’s body was fully clothed and there were no obvious signs of trauma, police said.

Jadewood Drive is less than a quarter mile from the pool where Clark’s body was found in the Providence Place neighborhood.
Clark's death is being investigated as both an accidental drowning and a homicide, police said. 

4. Hog huntin' coming to North Carolina. Wild hogs are no good for anybody, and recent legislation has made it easier for the state to hunt these feral swine by shooting at them from helicopters. From the N&O
Recently, they’ve [wild hogs] ravaged the region, and nationally they cause up to $1.5 billion in annual damage and control costs, according to the USDA. Disease is also an issue. Three years ago, North Carolina was ground zero for PEDv – the highly contagious porcine diarrhea virus.

Since April 2013, PEDv has killed an estimated 10 percent of America’s hog population. North Carolina’s $11 billion-a-year pork industry, which employs more than 46,000 people, has felt the threat.
Previously, Virginia and North Carolina were alone among states in preventing this practice. Under the new law, only state and federal wildlife control officers will be allowed to gun down these pigs. They'll start this fall. More:
With the law just recently passed, [U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Service North Carolina director Keith] Wehner sees a modest start for the program. The USDA already has secured permission for a federally owned Hughes, red and white, two-seat “little bird” helicopter to fly a two-week mission to North Carolina from an airbase in Bowling Green, Kentucky. For this, he’s budgeted roughly $40,000.

The USDA sharpshooter inside will use 12-gauge with buckshot.

“The window for this is when the leaves are down and when the deer season ends, so no hunters are around,” Wehner said.
The USDA will also coordinate the hunts with farmers and landowners to "assure everyone is on board with the helicopter shooting," the N&O reports. 

5. Pokemon Go. You want to read about this? Fine. Here's a story about Apex police warning of dangers associated with the gaming app. Here's another, from WUNC, filled with photos of people wandering around downtown Durham looking at their phones more than usual. 

High of 96 today, looks like. Stay cool, my bbs. 

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