Lynn Bonner

Lynn Bonner

Investigative Reporter Lynn Bonner covers the state legislature and politics, as well as elections, the state budget, public and mental health, safety net programs and issues of racial equality.

NC Gov. Cooper presents budget proposal with 18% average raises for teachers

By: - March 15, 2023

Gov. Roy Cooper released his proposed $32.9 billion state budget that includes hefty raises for teachers that he said would raise average teacher salaries to No.1 in the Southeast.  Teachers and principals would see average salary increases of 18% over two years under the plan Cooper presented Wednesday. His budget also restores master’s pay for […]

State Supreme Court revisits redistricting rulings it issued in just months ago

By: - March 15, 2023

A Democratic court majority struck down maps as unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders, but a new GOP majority has been asked to do an about-face. State Republican legislators Tuesday brought their argument that courts cannot bar partisan redistricting to a friendlier state Supreme Court than the one that ruled against them last year. 

NC Supreme Court to rehear elections cases this week

By: - March 13, 2023

The state Supreme Court this week is going to take the rare step to re-hear two recently decided elections cases – one on redistricting and the other on voter photo identification.  The redistricting case will be heard on Tuesday and the voter ID case on Wednesday.  These cases were decided in December, when Democrats held […]

NC Medicaid expansion wins approval from Senate committee

By: - March 7, 2023

The Senate Health Committee approved the bill expanding Medicaid in North Carolina that includes changes to the state certificate of need law that Republican senators want.  The bill details the agreement that Republican House and Senate leaders announced last week.  The expansion part of the bill would be void if there’s not a new state […]

Cooper stresses support for education in State of the State speech

By: - March 7, 2023

Education as a key to expanding the state’s skilled workforce and maintaining its economic competitiveness was a central theme in Gov. Roy Cooper’s State of the State speech Monday night, a speech that included references to priorities in his next budget.  He encouraged investment in the “education pipeline” that begins in early childhood.  “A great […]

Not dead yet: Republican lawmakers seek to pass several previously vetoed bills

By: - March 6, 2023

Lela Ali was in the Legislative Building last Wednesday as the organization she is part of, Muslim Women For, works to oppose a bill that would require sheriffs to cooperate with federal immigration officials.  She also happened  to be sitting in the House gallery that day as lawmakers approved a bill along party lines that takes responsibility for the state’s three schools for deaf and blind students away from the State Board of Education and gives it to local boards of trustees. 

NC Medicaid expansion agreement announced

By: - March 2, 2023

North Carolina is on track to allow about 600,000 people to gain health insurance through Medicaid expansion.  House and Senate leaders announced at a news conference Thursday morning that they had reached a deal on expansion. House Speaker Tim Moore called the agreement “carefully crafted and appropriately balanced.” Republicans opposed Medicaid expansion for years, while […]

NC sees an increase in child gun deaths

By: - March 2, 2023

Child deaths by firearms in North Carolina increased dramatically in 2020 and 2021, according to a report by the Child Fatality Task Force. The overall child death rate in 2021 was the highest since 2016.  Homicide was the second leading cause of death for children ages 1-17 in 2021, behind motor vehicle injuries.  Homicide was […]

NC Senate Republicans continue to push for health policy changes as part of a Medicaid expansion bill

By: - February 28, 2023

DonnaMarie Woodson was without health insurance for about a year after her husband was laid off from his job during the recession. When she was able to sign up for insurance again through the Affordable Care Act, Woodson said she went right away for a cancer screening. “Before I had even left the building, my […]

Berger, Moore seek to defend state’s abortion pill laws in federal court

By: - February 27, 2023

Republican legislators want to defend state laws in a federal suit that challenges the legality of North Carolina’s restrictions on prescribing the abortion pill. This comes after the Attorney General’s office said the objection to state restrictions the lawsuit raises is on point. To recap, an Ob/Gyn who practices in Orange County sued the state, […]

NC has a $3.25 billion surplus. What will legislators do with it?

By: - February 22, 2023

As legislators begin building a state budget, they’re getting a boost from a $3.25 billion surplus thanks to more money than anticipated flowing into state coffers from tax collections and interest earnings. Legislators heard the details of the state’s revenue forecast Tuesday morning, a financial report compiled by economists working for the legislature’s fiscal research […]

Reproductive rights advocates tell legislators to reject more abortion restrictions

By: - February 21, 2023

Janice Robinson recalled a scary time when she was a pregnant 15-year-old in South Carolina, almost 50 years ago. Her mother took her to have an abortion. Her mother took her not to a medical doctor, but someone unlicensed and working in secret. Robinson said she didn’t have a say in any of it. “I […]