The Numbers Don’t Add Up To The Proposed Bill

The “Let Them Spawn” bill (HB-483) will be coming up for a vote in the North Carolina Senate shortly. The bill has already passed the North Carolina House. The bill would drastically limit the amount of fish commercial fishermen would be allowed to catch. The bill is aimed at limiting commercial fishermen. It does not take into account the fact that recreational fishermen catch many more fish than commercial fishermen. I was truly surprised at the numbers–they can be found in The County Compass week of June 27-July 3 Issue.

These are the numbers:

So what is this about?

The article concludes:

The undeniable facts and truth when it comes to fishing are that on any given year, recreational anglers catch overwhelming numbers of fish. They typically catch MORE poundage on many of the shared species that both recreational and commercial fishermen target. No one complains about this typically from the commercial side because they believe they have their right to fish. This, however, is not the case you typically – or ever – hear from the recreational fishermen and their special interest groups – the CCA and NC Wildlife Federation.

These groups have one agenda and one agenda only. To lobby your legislators and preach that commercial interests cause ALL damage to any fish stock. How aggravating it must be to most legislators to hear the same story over and over again, and see these druids preach their bile when anyone with any aptitude can look at numbers such as these presented in the chart and know they are spouting falsehoods.

I reference it in this biblical way because I believe that the legislators who drink in this poison and continuously attempt to introduce bills against commercial fishermen are akin to Jim Jones and his cult following. They are indeed directed, and I’m sure if probed deep enough, well-funded by special interest groups including the aforementioned. Extremely fluent and wealthy in backing by small conclaves of radicals that absolutely hate anything to do with commercial fishing but are well funded enough to keep pushing their agendas forward.

I will tell the average citizen, consumer, and your legislative elected officials that represent you: DON’T DRINK THE KOOL-AID!

Learn the facts, know your constituents, and get to know the people that bring you Quality North Carolina seafood. Only through interaction with all of these hard working people will you ever come to understand that everyone has a right to fish either for recreation, or to provide for their families.

Another article in the County Compass explains that the passage of HB-483 would create some health issues for those who consume seafood in North Carolina. We are not ‘seafood independent.’ Imported seafood accounts for over 90% of seafood consumed by Americans. Imported shrimp accounts for 90% to 94% of the shrimp that Americans consume.

The article explains:

Imported seafood is largely grown in aquaculture ponds where veterinary drug use is necessary to prevent mortality and maximize yields. These drugs include the widespread use of antibiotics and other illegal veterinary drugs some of which are known carcinogens.

Imported seafood is not a good thing for Americans to be eating. Please contact your North Carolina Senator and tell him to vote against this bill. Information on how to contact your Senator can be found at the North Carolina General Assembly web page.

Good Deeds Rarely Go Unpunished

In late February, H.R. 184 was introduced into the North Carolina House of Representatives. In early April, H.R. 184 made it to the North Carolina Senate where it was referred to the Committee On Rules and Operations of the Senate. There it sits. It’s a bad bill, catering to special interests, and need to die there.

So exactly what is H.R. 184? On April 4, 2019, Raynor James wrote an article describing the debate in the North Carolina House of Representatives over H.R. 184. In her article Raynor explained that H.R. 184 would tie the hands of State Treasurer Dale Folwell in dealing with the rapidly growing problems with the State Health Plan.

An article in The Daily Haymaker on March 26 explains some of what is going on:

Former state representative Dale Folwell (R) worked wonders in cleaning up the highly FUBAR-ed unemployment insurance system. You would think it would be a no-brainer to put him on fixing that money-bleeding nightmare known as the state health plan. (The plan made it to its current sorry state in no small part to the micro-managing mischief by legislators in both parties who saw it as their own personal piggy-bank and slush fund.)

So, along comes Dale Folwell trying to do exactly what the legislature empowered the state treasurer’s office to do years ago:  competently manage the state health plan.  Folwell decided taxpayers needed to understand exactly what  health care providers were billing the health plan FOR.

This did not sit well with the folks at the hospitals and clinics sending in those fat, vague, non-specific bills.  Armies of lobbyists were dispatched to spend dark money on ads smearing Folwell and his pricing transparency plan.  A lot of politician pockets were lined.  A bill got drafted (with a lot of lobbyist, um. “help”)  that tied Folwell’s hands on exactly what he could to in regard to the state health plan.

The bill, H184, got its first hearing in the House Health Committee today.  Conveniently, there was NO roll call vote on this expensive legislation — with a total cost over 3 years of $400 to 600 MILLION. 

The bill did get amended.  The time frame for the “study” on  changing the health plan was shortened. The state employees — who stand to be affected the most by this bill — got their representation on the “study committee” expanded from ONE to TWO.  (Isn’t that nice?)    And the whole package is still going to cost the taxpayers an additional $241 MILLION.

The article then explains the problem:

There was no real good reason to do this. It went against one of the alleged core principles of the majority party. The prime beneficiaries of the state health plan — the state employees — appear to be solidly behind what Folwell is doing. Taxpayers — seeking to avoid a $400-600 MILLION hit from doing NOTHING and “studying” the idea of reform — appear to be all for it.

But the deep-pocketed lobbyists who are so kind and compassionate to campaign accounts all over Jones Street were not happy and HAD to be mollified.

Some Republicans are fighting back. There was a Resolution at the North Carolina Third District Republican Convention today that backed Dale Folwell and his efforts to clean up the State Health Plan. The Resolution passed easily.

The Resolution included the following:

In 2008, expenses for the North Carolina State Health Plan were roughly $2.2 billion; today they are roughly $3.4 billion. Medical and pharmaceutical costs are increasing five to nine percent annually and current spending projections estimate that the plan will be insolvent by 2023 unless action is taken. The campaign to fix the state healthcare plan is opposed mainly by special interests–hospitals and those who profit by the inefficiency and inflated costs of medical care under the current system.

I was told that the bill would probably die in committee. I hope that happens. However, the fact that saving taxpayer money was opposed by special interest groups should not come as a shock to any of us. That fact underlines the need for citizens to stay aware of what our legislature is doing. North Carolina is in a strong position economically–it is a place where businesses relocate. If our State Health Plan is not brought under control, our taxes will increases to cover the cost of the program and we will be much less attractive to businesses looking for a place to be.

An Explanation Of The Debate About The North Carolina Primary Date

North Carolina’s Republican Presidential Primary: The Date Matters!

Written by Mark D. Jones

1st Vice Chairman

Craven County Republican Party


North Carolina could be a major player in the race to determine the 2016 Republican Presidential nominee.  With 72 delegates (6thhighest in the country), the key word is “could”.  A combination of obscure and unfair Republican National Committee (RNC) rules and North Carolina legislative actions could spoil this opportunity.

The RNC makes the rules related to how Republican delegates are apportioned, and the North Carolina Legislature has the authority to set the date of our Primary.  The RNC has developed a concept known as the “proportionality window” which imposes two potential penalties on 46 of the 50 states for holding primaries before March 14.  Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, and South Carolina are exempt from these penalties, and you will hear a lot of talk about early Primaries in these states next year.  The first of the penalties mentioned above means that any other state that chooses a Primary date before March 1 will lose a significant percentage of its delegates.  North Carolina originally planned for a February Primary which would reduce our delegate count from 72 to 12 and make our state insignificant.

The North Carolina House of Representatives passed a Bill (H.B. 457) that would move the Primary date to March 8, 2016.  This restores our delegate count to 72 but comes with another pitfall.  Any state, other than the four exempt states already mentioned, that holds a Primary the first two weeks of the month will be forced to allocate those delegate on a proportional basis.  This means that if 5, or even 15, candidates are on the ballot, each candidate will receive a percentage of our delegates commensurate with the percentage of the vote they receive.This may sounds like a fair process on the surface, but as usual, there is more to the story.  The RNC’s penalty will mean that a number of very conservative states,with high delegate counts like Texas, Virginia, and North Carolina, that intend to hold early Primaries, will be forced to divide their delegates among multiple candidates.  In fact, 10 of 15 Southern states plan to hold their Primaries in this window. Conservative stalwarts like Colorado and Utah also plan to hold Primaries in this window.  It is highly unlikely any candidate will emerge from these conservative states with enough delegates to establish a significant lead or gain momentum in the race to be the Republican nominee before March 14.

Then along comes the period after March 14.  States are then allowed to grant their delegates on a winner-take-all basis.  This is when Primaries will be held in more liberal states like Illinois, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.  These states can, and likely will, grant all of their large delegate counts to one candidate who gets a simple majority.  As a result, these states will almost certainly determine who wins the 2016 nomination to be the Republican candidate.  It will almost certainly be a liberal,Establishment candidate rather than a Conservative.

So, what is the solution?  The RNC could change the rules, but it is unlikely this will happen.  The reason why is clear.  Conservatives are left with no good choice.  Do nothing, and the liberal northeast will pick the candidate.  Gamble on something the RNC does not expect, and maybe things can change.  The only thing we can control at this point in North Carolina is the date of our own Primary.  House Bill 457 made the crossover to the North Carolina Senate before the April 30, 2015 deadline.  Our Senate can now amend the Bill to hold the Primary after March14 and make North Carolina a winner-take-all state.  With the already mentioned 6th highest number of delegates in the Country, North Carolina will become ground zero for candidates hoping to be our nominee.  A winner-take-all Primary will energize Republican activists and workers and bring all the leading candidates to our state.  For those of us hoping for a conservative Republican nominee, we can only hope other conservative states see the pitfalls of the early Primaries and change their dates as well.

There is still time to contact your Senator about this important issue.  Educate them about the details and importance of this issue and ask that they support awinner-take-all Primary after March 14.  All Senators are important, but members of the Senate Rules and Operations Committee and the Senate Joint Legislative Elections Oversight Committee are critical.  Senator Bob Rucho (919-733-5655) from Mecklenburg County is Chairman of the ElectionsCommittee.  It is important for Republicans to contact these leaders and all Senators and make their voice heard about this critical issue.  With a change to a winner-take-all Primary, and hopefully a little help from other conservative states, North Carolina may well be a huge player in determining the nominee to represent the Republican Party in the 2016 Presidential race.  Information about North Carolina Senators can be found at the following link:

(Information for this article was obtained from an article published September 3, 2014 on National and titled: New RNC Rules Stymie Conservatives in the Primaries by Henry Olsen.Read more at:



Candidates Forum In New Bern

Last Night I attended the Candidate Forum at the Stanly Hall Ballroom in New Bern, North Carolina. The forum was sponsored by the Coastal Carolina Taxpayers Association. The candidates attending included Republicans and Democrats running for office at various levels of government including the U. S. Senate the U. S. House of Representatives, the North Carolina Senate, the North Carolina House of Representatives, and various other state and county offices. It was a very informative night, and I encourage you if you live in an area that does candidate forums, to attend one–they are worth attending. On May 6th North Carolina voters will go to the polls to vote in a primary election. Many of the candidates for office have primary challenges. Be an informed voter.

It would take forever to detail what each candidate said, so I am going to simply list general impressions of a few candidates who stood out.

Greg Brannon is impressive. His off-the-cuff knowledge of the U.S. Constitution is inspiring. He is definitely ready for prime time. His answers to questions were clear and concise, and there was nothing he had to backtrack on as the questions continued. It was also interesting to see that some of the other candidates deferred to him on Constitutional questions. There were a number of candidates who made statements during the question and answer period that they had to backtrack on. I suspect they will be working on this before the election.

I was also impressed by Norm Sanderson and Michael Speciale. Norm Sanderson is serving is freshman term in the North Carolina Senate, and Michael Speciale is serving his freshman term in the North Carolina House. Both men had clear ideas on what needs to be done in North Carolina and clear plans for instituting those ideas.

I was also impressed by George Liner, running for Craven County Board of Commissioners. When asked a question about the Craven County tall structures laws and how they would protect people and property values from a wind farm, he was already aware of the potential problems that would arise. He seemed well prepared to hold the office if he is elected.

All of the candidates had an opportunity to state their reasons for running and their positions on various subjects. It was a very informative evening. As a new resident of this area, I learned a lot at the forum. It was very helpful to me to see the candidates and hear what they considered the major issues facing the state and local communities.

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