Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EDT
FRANKLIN GRAHAM-TRUMP SHIRT
Franklin Graham sells Trump-referencing ‘PRAY FOR 45’ shirts
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – For $15.99, followers of Billy Graham’s son Franklin can get a T-shirt urging people to pray for the 45th president.
The Rev. Franklin Graham says on Facebook he was inspired to sell the “PRAY FOR 45” shirts after seeing news coverage of shirts with the slogan “IMPEACH 45.” Echoing Trump’s signature campaign motto, Graham writes: “Prayer can make America great!”
The shirts are for sale on the website of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
The younger Graham, who leads his late father’s namesake association, has been an outspoken Trump ally and wrote in a recent memoir that he thanks God that Trump was elected.
Still, the call for presidential prayer comes several weeks after Graham criticized the Trump administration’s onetime policy separating children from parents at the border.
GOP backtrack on early-voting change signed by Cooper
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Gov. Roy Cooper has signed the only piece of legislation the North Carolina General Assembly had on his desk when it adjourned – one that restored early in-person voting on the Saturday before Election Day this year only.
Cooper said Monday he has signed the bill, which changed a previous measure the legislature passed despite the governor’s veto.
The previous measure shifted starting and ending dates for the early-voting period so it would end the Friday before the election. Cooper and his allies said eliminating Saturday and making other changes would make it harder for people to vote.
Republicans decided in the latest bill to add Saturday voting, but just for 2018. That measure also makes it easier for Hyde County to meet new voting-time requirements on Ocracoke Island.
Forest, Troxler visit eastern N Carolina on hog suit warning
BEULAHVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Republican politicians are heading to an eastern North Carolina farm to talk why they’re worried litigation involving hog farms could harm the state’s economy.
A top GOP legislator says Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, state Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler and other lawmakers plan to attend a news conference Tuesday at a Duplin County farm to highlight the “unfairness” of recent and pending lawsuits.
Neighbors to farms producing hogs for Smithfield Foods have filed dozens of lawsuits complaining their odors and activities are a nuisance. Juries for two lawsuits already tried have returned multimillion-dollar verdicts against Smithfield.
The first verdict caused the General Assembly last month to approve new restrictions on initiating these nuisance lawsuits, passing it over Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto. But the new law can’t halt pending cases.
BIRDS AND BRIDGE
Purple martins reign for a few weeks on this NC bridge
MANNS HARBOR, N.C. (AP) – It’s time once again to slow down for birds on one bridge along North Carolina’s Outer Banks.
From mid-July through August, state transportation officials lower the speed limit at dawn and dusk along the William B. Umstead bridge over the Croatan Sound at Manns Harbor.
The 20-mph-speed limit goes into effect to protect the more than 100,000 purple martins that use the bridge as their home before their annual migration to Brazil. The birds roost under the west end of the bridge at night. They depart at dawn for feeding before returning at sunset.
The state Transportation Department also activates flashing lights on the bridge.
To view the flock, check out Dare County’s multi-purpose pier at the end of the bridge.
OUTDOOR RECREATION SUMMIT
North Carolina site for national outdoor recreation summit
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Nearly a dozen states are represented at a western North Carolina gathering designed to focus how to make their regions attractive to outdoor recreation companies and enthusiasts.
Gov. Roy Cooper and Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper planned to participate in a panel discussion Tuesday at the “Outdoor Recreation Industry Confluence” summit, which is going on through Wednesday in Asheville.
The meeting is the second such summit nationally and is being held to improve collaboration in supporting and expanding the outdoor recreation industry.
The Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina – which helps recruit industries – is helping put on the summit. The partnership says the industry creates $28 billion in consumer spending annually and supports 260,000 jobs. The partnership recently hired someone specifically focused on outdoor recreation matters.
Grease backup causes wastewater spill in North Carolina
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – Officials say a grease blockage has led to a wastewater spill in North Carolina.
The city of Durham said in a news release that about 800 gallons (3,000 liters) of wastewater flowed into a tributary of New Hope Creek from private sewer cleanouts.
The city said the overflow occurred around 10:15 a.m. Sunday and lasted nearly three hours.
The city said the area affected by the overflow has been cleaned and there is no apparent threat to people or property.
City officials notified the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality Division of Water Resources.
CHANNEL CHANGE-ASSAULT CHARGE
Deputies: Woman assaults boyfriend for changing TV channel
(Information from: Winston-Salem Journal, http://www.journalnow.com)
LEXINGTON, N.C. (AP) – Sheriff’s deputies in North Carolina have accused a woman of biting her boyfriend after he changed the channel on a television she was watching.
The Winston-Salem Journal reports the Davidson County Sheriff’s Office said the man told investigators 21-year-old Abby Nicole Saunders attacked him Saturday when he went into a bedroom to change the channel on the television.
Deputies say the man sustained bite marks on his neck, right forearm and the inside of his left arm. He also had a red mark on his chest where investigators said Saunders hit him.
Online records show Saunders is in the Davidson County jail, but it’s not known if she has an attorney.
Restaurant worker on leave after calling 911 on black family
NEWNAN, Ga. (AP) – A Georgia restaurant worker is on administrative leave after calling 911 to report an African-American family who had stopped there for dinner.
The Dobson family of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, stopped at the Subway restaurant in Newnan, Georgia, one week ago after celebrating a grandmother’s birthday. They were on their way back home.
The employee called 911 and told police the family looked suspicious and was afraid they were going to rob the store. In the call, the employee said there are “eight people in a van” who were going back forth to the bathroom and possibly putting soda in water cups.
WFMY-TV in Greensboro, North Carolina, reported the worker has been placed on administrative leave. The franchise owner and the police officer responding to the call apologized to the family.