Around the state: news in North Carolina

Published 1:25 pm Tuesday, May 21, 2019

N Carolina woman sues Project Veritas, founder for libel

RALEIGH (AP) — A trial over a lawsuit against right-wing group Project Veritas and its founder James O’Keefe is under way in North Carolina. At issue is how a woman who was struck in the face outside a 2016 Donald Trump campaign rally was portrayed in a video.

Jurors in Asheville were sequestered overnight to hear testimony Tuesday in Shirley Teter’s lawsuit. Police said the disabled woman was assaulted and knocked to the ground.

Project Veritas released a video a month later that described Teter as a paid Democratic operative aiming to provoke assaults by Trump supporters. Teter sued, saying that was untrue and the video sparked threatening online comments that caused her to fear for her safety.

Project Veritas has used disguises and hidden cameras to uncover supposed liberal bias and corruption.


North Carolina Senate debates bill to fix voter ID denials

RALEIGH (AP) — Voter ID legislation now goes before North Carolina’s Senate after the House eased rules around authenticating student and employee identification cards for use in next year’s elections.

The House bill is set for Senate elections committee debate on Tuesday. The photo ID cards provided by many University of North Carolina system campuses have failed to meet security standards set in a new law, and without some changes, hundreds of state and local institutions can’t apply again to the State Board of Elections to have their IDs qualify for election use until 2021.

The House bill provides another chance to qualify this fall. The House also would give county elections boards more flexibility operating early in-person voting places in municipal elections.


Craft beer legislation completes round, heads to governor

RALEIGH (AP) — Small breweries in North Carolina could soon be toasting a new law that would give growing beer-makers in the state more time to sell their products on their own without third-party distributors.

By a 38-3 vote, the Senate gave final legislative approval Monday night to a measure that represents a compromise between alcohol wholesalers and craft brewers hammered out over years of negotiation and litigation. The bill already cleared the House and now goes to Gov. Roy Cooper — a craft brewing booster — for his signature.

The bipartisan bill would allow breweries to sell up to 50,000 barrels of beer annually on their own. The current limit is 25,000 barrels. Craft breweries in the state have grown this decade from 45 to over 200.


Raleigh-Durham Airports adds gates, security lanes

MORRISVILLE (AP) — Raleigh-Durham International Airport is expanding both gates and security lanes as the airport copes with a record-breaking number of passengers.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reports three budget airlines will join Southwest in Terminal 1 by April 1, 2020. The move by Allegiant, Frontier and Spirit Airlines will free space in Terminal 2.

To make room for the new airlines, four unused gates in Terminal 1 will be activated.

In addition, Terminal 2 now has two more security lanes for a total of 12.

Traffic continues to grow at RDU, where a record 6.4 million passengers flew last year. RDU officials say nearly 572,000 passengers boarded flights in April, a 6.2% increase compared to the same month last year.


Marine Corps Harrier jet crashes in North Carolina

CHERRY POINT (AP) — Officials say a Marine jet crashed in a wooded area in North Carolina, but the pilot ejected from the aircraft and was taken to a hospital.

A statement posted to Facebook from the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point says the AV-8B Harrier crashed Monday night near Havelock. There were no reports of injuries on the ground or property damage.

The pilot’s condition was not immediately known. The crash site was cordoned off by military officials.

The cause of the crash is currently under investigation.