Articles by Colin Campbell

State Library to Issue Borrower Cards

Colin Campbell, THE INSIDER, 10/23/17 For the first time in its 200-year history, the Government & Heritage Library at the State Library of North Carolina is issuing library cards to state residents and letting them take home books and other items from its extensive historical collection. The new service began Sept. 1 after state librarians worked with the Office of…


Colin Campbell: Wacky Rules Complicate Municipal Elections

RALEIGH — If the rules for Raleigh’s municipal elections had applied to last year’s governor’s race, Pat McCrory would have had the power to send voters back to the polls in December. It would have been the same election without the Libertarian candidate — and given Gov. Roy Cooper’s narrow margin of victory in November, it’s anybody’s guess who would…


Colin Campbell: An Assault on Newspapers, Transparency

RALEIGH — Imagine this hypothetical scenario: Someone wants to build a factory in your neighborhood, a change that would bring noise, pollution and heavy truck traffic. Your local government has to hold a public hearing and OK the proposal first, but that’s already happened before you even heard about it. The bulldozers have arrived to start construction, and it’s too…


Colin Campbell: Time for Fireworks in Raleigh — Again

RALEIGH — The legislature is coming back to town Oct. 4, and as usual, sticking it to Gov. Roy Cooper is at the top of the agenda. Overriding the governor’s vetoes is one of the main reasons we’re seeing the third extra session since the legislature ended its regular session back in June. Every extra session brings another round of…


Recovery Slow for Edgecombe County Town

By Colin Campbell, NCInsider.com Nearly a year after Hurricane Matthew, Princeville’s public housing complex sits deserted behind a chain-link fence. The elementary school is still gutted, with a sign out front listing events in October 2016 before the flood arrived. Even the town hall and fire station haven’t reopened and are using temporary facilities elsewhere. Recovery has been slow for…


Colin Campbell: Take Time with Judicial Tinkering

RALEIGH — While legislative and congressional districts are redrawn every 10 years to match population changes — so everyone’s vote counts equally — North Carolina’s judicial districts haven’t been redrawn in decades. Five of them haven’t changed since 1965. Still, Rep. Justin Burr caught many people by surprise when he unveiled new proposed maps on Twitter in the hectic final…


Colin Campbell: Don’t Let A Coin Toss Pick Your Mayor

RALEIGH — The decision to oust the incumbent mayor of North Carolina’s largest city came down to a margin of just 3,398 voters — 0.6 percent of the registered voters in Charlotte. Pathetic voter turnout in municipal races is nothing new, and the 8.73 percent turnout for the Charlotte City Council primary is actually an increase over past years. It…


Colin Campbell: Matthew Recovery is the State’s Problem Now

RALEIGH — While the nation focuses on Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Harvey, North Carolina still doesn’t have the money it needs to rebuild from Hurricane Matthew. Yes, it’s been nearly a year since widespread flooding hit the eastern part of our state. Yes, federal and state politicians have touted multiple rounds of recovery funding. But after 11 months, many homeowners…


Colin Campbell: Opinion Shifting Fast on N.C. Confederate Monuments

RALEIGH — The days of North Carolina’s many Confederate monuments could be numbered after Gov. Roy Cooper declared war on them — just one day after he chastised protesters who toppled a monument in Durham. The governor’s announcement that the monuments “should come down” came as a surprise because a 2015 law bans Cooper and local governments from taking down…


Colin Campbell: Redistricting Could Boot Out Incumbents

RALEIGH — The jury’s still out on whether court-ordered redistricting will reduce Republicans’ power in the legislature after the 2018 election, but it’s becoming clear that the new districts could force out some incumbents from both parties — including a few African-American lawmakers. The legislature’s Redistricting Committee set criteria Aug. 10 to guide their mapmaking consultant, Tom Hofeller, and the…