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Coming up this week…

Just weeks after passing a resolution in favor of the marriage discrimination amendment, the Wake County Board of Commissioners will take up a resolution at this Monday’s meeting in support of the Voter ID bill (House Bill 351).

The County Commissioner’s meeting is scheduled for 2:00pm today on the 7th floor of the Wake County Courthouse. If you want to sound off, the public comment period runs from 2:30pm to 3:00pm.

The NC Department of Transportation returns to Pamlico Community College this evening for another public hearing about ferry toll rates. A similar hearing last month turned out more than 500 citizens upset by the proposed hike in ferry fees.

With the short session fast approaching, legislators are already busy examining the state budget and adjustments that will need to be made to last year’s spending plan. On Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, the Joint Appropriations/Base Budget will meet and discuss the state’s financial picture. Both meetings will begin at 8:30am in Room 643 of the Legislative Office Building in Raleigh.

This week health care activists will mark the second year anniversary of President Obama’s signing of the national health care reform law. The anniversary comes just days before the U.S. Supreme Court will be hearing arguments about the constitutionality of the law.

On Tuesday at 10:30am in the press room at the Legislative building, US Dept. of Health and Human Services Regional Director Anton Gunn will join with women’s organizations, health care advocacy and consumer groups to sing the praises of the legislation. Because of the Act, millions of women have expanded access to basic health care, such as mammograms and Pap smears. They can no longer be dropped from their health insurance when they need it most.

On Tuesday in Sanford, the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources will hold the first of two meetings slated for this this month to present its draft report on fracking and take public comments.

Last week DENR release a draft of their extensive study that found this controversial method of natural gas drilling can be done safely if regulations are put in place first. This will be the first chance though that residents have had to respond to the findings.

Kick Butts Day is Wednesday – a day when thousands of youth in every state stand up and speak out against Big Tobacco. This year is particularly significant, because the youth groups participating are currently state funded, and their funding is set to expire on June 30th, with no promise for renewal. Since North Carolina began funding a comprehensive tobacco prevention program in 2003, the state has at least 53,000 fewer students who smoke cigarettes.

On Thursday, former GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain delivers the keynote address at the Wake County Republicans meeting. Want to attend? The meeting gets underway at 5:30pm at the Kerr Scott Building on the State Fairgrounds, Raleigh.

 

The NC Defend Education Coalition will host a statewide student conference this Saturday called “The Future is Ours!” Students, young people, and community activists from across the state will be getting together to strategize about how we can continue to build the movement for justice and for education and against budget cuts. Saturday’s conference at North Carolina A&T University follows February’s protest by hundreds of students from across NC to tuition hikes and budget cuts.

Occupy Raleigh joins in a national day of action this Sunday with a call to March on our nation’s Statehouses. The march is intended to restore citizen control of the state legislature and to expose corporate influence over public officials.

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