North Carolina briefsPublished 9:08am Thursday, January 3, 2013
UNC-TV offers live inauguration coverage
In advance of the opening of the North Carolina General Assembly’s new session on Wednesday, Jan. 9, Governor-Elect Pat McCrory will take the official oath of office this Saturday, Jan. 5, at noon. McCrory’s swearing-in ceremony is private, but North Carolinians can enjoy a front row seat thanks to UNC-TV. Watch live coverage of the official swearing in ceremony for Governor-Elect McCrory this Saturday, Jan. 5, at noon, in the Old House Chamber of the North Carolina State Capitol. The following week, Saturday, Jan. 12, at 11 a.m., UNC-TV provides live coverage of the 2013 North Carolina Inauguration festivities and the inaugural address of North Carolina’s 74th governor.
UNC-TV includes four digital channels: flagship UNC-TV; UNC-EX The Explorer Channel; UNC-KD The Kids Channel; and UNC-MX The Eclectic Mix Channel (available on digital cable only).
Charlotte officer charged with New Year’s Eve DWI
CHARLOTTE (AP) — A Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer has been charged with driving while impaired after a Union County traffic stop on New Year’s Eve.
State troopers say 44-year-old Matthew Thompson was driving his Ford Explorer at around 6 p.m. Monday when he was stopped for swerving.
The patrol says Thompson had been drinking but wouldn’t say if the officer failed a field sobriety test or give his blood-alcohol level.
Thompson has been charged with DWI, operating a vehicle with no insurance, operating a vehicle with an expired registration and driving left of center. His license has been revoked for 30 days, and it wasn’t known if he had an attorney.
The police department says Thompson has been an officer since 1990 and has been placed on leave.
NC high court decision on sweepstakes takes effect
RALEIGH (AP) — A North Carolina Supreme Court decision upholding a ban on video sweepstakes machines is going into effect.
Last month, the state Supreme Court denied a request from the sweepstakes game industry to delay an earlier decision that sweepstakes halls are gambling operations. The court’s ruling goes into effect statewide on Thursday.
The industry had sought a few weeks to see if the U.S. Supreme Court would consider its claim of free-speech protections.
It’s unclear whether the sweepstakes parlors that have opened across the state will be closed or whether their owners will find a way to comply with the law, as some have said they will do.
State Attorney General Roy Cooper says he doesn’t anticipate widespread Internet café raids across the state on Thursday.
NC judge voids teacher paycheck law targeting NCAE
RALEIGH (AP) — A North Carolina judge says Republican-backed legislation aimed at cutting off the revenue stream of a Democrat-friendly teachers association violates the constitution and can’t be enforced.
Wake County Superior Court Judge Paul Gessner issued his order last month in favor of the North Carolina Association of Educators, which announced the decision Thursday. Gessner ruled the state’s largest teacher lobbying group was the victim of “retaliatory viewpoint discrimination.”
Republican state House Speaker Thom Tillis said in 2011 the law cutting off NCAE from collecting membership dues from paychecks was in response to the group’s political activity. Spokesmen for Tillis and Senate leader Phil Berger of Rockingham County declined comment on the ruling.