Political Notebook: Bill to require newborn heart screenings breezes through committee

  • Posted: Friday, March 1, 2013 11:54 p.m.

RALEIGH — A bill that would require mandatory heart disease screening breezed through a House of Representatives committee Tuesday.

Recommended by the North Carolina Child Fatality Task Force, the increased screening could prevent heart murmurs or more life-threatening defects from going undetected in newborns. The bill would require hospitals to test newborns before they’re released.

Sen. Andrew Brock (R-Davie) is a primary sponsor of the bill. The measure was filed Feb. 18.

McLaurin backs Bible electives bill

RALEIGH — N.C. Sen. Gene McLaurin (D-Rockingham) signed on Thursday to co-sponsor Senate Bill 138, which would allow local boards of education to offer an elective course on Bible education in high schools.

The legislation, originally sponsored by Sen. Stan Bingham (R-33), allows for credit to be given for these optional courses on the Old Testament, New Testament, or a combination of the two. Sen.

Andrew Brock (R-Davie) also sponsored the bill.

“My faith in God has sustained me throughout my life — as a husband, father, businessman, former mayor, and now legislator. The Bible is consistently the number one selling book in the world,” McLaurin wrote in a press release. “I think the opportunity for future generations to gain knowledge and wisdom from the Bible is a real positive for North Carolinians and an issue far above party politics.”

Democracy North Carolina speaker to talk ‘fair elections’

SALISBURY — Linda Sutton, field manager for Democracy North Carolina, will speak Monday on a local movement for less corporate money in politics.

Sutton will speak at Rail Walks Studios and Gallery on North Lee Street at 7 p.m.

Sutton, who has previously spoken in Salisbury as an advocate of her nonpartisan group, is expected to discuss the millions of corporate dollars dumped into campaigns each election.

A press release from Rowan County Democrat Dottie Hoy said Sutton is also expected to talk about the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to support Citizens United.

Hoy said with corporations being treated as individuals under the ruling and allowed unrestricted giving to support or oppose candidates and issues, “small donors and those who are harmed by the actions of these corporations have essentially lost their voice in political debate,” Hoy wrote.

The event is free and open to the public. It’s sponsored by the Democratic Women of Rowan County.

‘Barbarians’ and new blood

SALISBURY — February has enjoyed some old fashioned political ribbing.

In an email encouraging Rowan County Democrats to be aware of conservative-led legislation moving through the N.C. General Assembly, Veleria Levy, chair of the Rowan County Democrats, apparently referred to Republican legislators as “barbarians.”

“Recommend you follow it closely during the upcoming legislative session in NCGA,” the email said. “The barbarians are out to put it to us in every possible way.”

The email intended for a Rowan Democrats online group said it was authored “on behalf of Veleria Levy.”

On Feb. 12, Rowan County Commissioners Chairman Jim Sides told a group of Rowan County Republicans to think about who they want to vote for in the next Salisbury City Council election.

“We need to get some new blood in the city council,” Sides said.

At the time, Sides was involved in a dispute with city officials over de-annexation of the Rowan County Airport and had received word the city would consider borrowing funds for the Rowan-Salisbury School System Central Office building.

Contact reporter Nathan Hardin at 704-797-4246.

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