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Governor McCrory’s blast at The N&O got him another day of the “blaring, top-of-the-fold” headlines he blasted. But this is just the beginning of the Coal Ash Saga. We soon will have a U.S. Attorney’s investigation and a fight over who pays: McCrory’s former boss, Duke Energy, or his current boss, the People of North Carolina.
McCrory protested that the N&O’s story Thursday “mischaracterized a misinterpretation of a very convoluted form.” It is not a convoluted form. Look for yourself here. In fact, it is just like your income taxes: You file them by April 15 for the prior year ending December 31.
Still, I believe Governor McCrory when he says, in effect, that it was incompetence, rather than a conspiracy. But it is breathtaking incompetence. It is hard to fathom how the Governor of North Carolina and his legal counsel misunderstood the form. Or why somebody on the Governor’s staff didn’t foresee the problem.
Here’s what former legislative counsel Gerry Cohen says (and remember, he was honored a couple of weeks ago by members of both parties for his reliability and integrity): “How could Bob Stephens have had a misunderstanding that the date of ownership of the stock was as of April 15, 2014, when the 2013 SEI CLEARLY says on the tip of page 2 that the date of stock ownership was to be as of December 31. Was the mistake that he only read page 1? Or missed the penalties provision at the end of the form, which states that it could be a violation of GS 138A-45? I know that the text of 138A-45 tells you that for a constitutional officer, it is malfeasance and punishable under GS 123-5.”
The “misstatement” is a small part of the Governor’s problem. As one TAPster noted, he says he sold the stock NOT because it was the right thing to do, but because his “integrity was being challenged” and he wanted to put “this thing to bed.” In other words, it’s about PR, not integrity.
Second, as WRAL reported, “McCrory has steadfastly refused to take a position on whether shareholders or customers should pay for it (the coal ash cleanup), saying that decision should be left up to the state Utilities Commission.”
That is a dodge. Democrats in the legislature tried to amend the coal ash bill so the Utilities Commission couldn’t let Duke pass the cleanup costs on to ratepayers. Republicans squashed that, and they will answer for it this fall. And Roy Cooper has taken a position exactly opposite of McCrory’s.
Finally, away from the cameras, the federal grand jury investigation rolls on. Wait for those blaring, top-of-the-fold headlines.


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One comment on “Day Two, But Still Part One

  1. Anonymous says:

    First and foremost…republicans aren’t going to pay for anything to do with the coal ash spill and subsequent clean-up effort that’s going on now or has gone on. That’s really just a bunch of wishful thinking, Gary.

    Coal ash…coal ash….coal ash…that’s been driven down our throats so much by the left (mostly blog sites like this one). McCrory worked at Duke Power…had little-to-nothing to do with the coal ash decisions. It’s just a fact and most folks know this. In fact, the real blame is against those that inspected these sites and were charged with enforcing regulations of them back when republicans were the minority party in North Carolina. Facts sometime are very inconvenient for democrats…liberals…progressives. Perception through skewed presentations is how these people present their information. Yes, it is bought hook-line-sinker by the radical, information-blind low educated voters in our state, but the reality is just so much different than what is given to us by the left. It’s a sad thing but, it’s a true thing. Like it or not.

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