VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA-BOWLING ALLEYS
Judge won’t delay order that lets N.C. bowling alleys reopen
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina judge has refused to delay enforcement of his ruling allowing dozen of bowling alleys to reopen in contradiction to Gov. Roy Cooper’s COVID-19 executive order. Judge James Gale denied on Wednesday the request from attorneys for the state representing Cooper in a lawsuit filed by an association of bowling lane operators. Now Department of Justice lawyers are asking the state Supreme Court to intervene. Gale decided the association was likely to win on arguments that Cooper’s order wrongly treated them differently compared to businesses with similar virus-risk levels allowed to reopen. Bars and gyms remain closed.
AP-NC-SUBWAY GUN POLICY
Subway restaurant chain asks customers to conceal weapons
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Subway restaurant chain is now asking customers to conceal their firearms when coming into its stores across the nation. The Raleigh News & Observer reported Wednesday that the policy change comes two months after photos showed gun-toting customers visiting a store in the North Carolina city. The Connecticut-based company has posted the change on the policy section of its website. The policy does not apply to law enforcement. The policy states that the chain “respectfully requests that guests … refrain from openly displaying firearms inside restaurants — even in states where ‘open carry’ is permitted.”
Statue marking graves of Confederate soldiers is toppled
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — A Confederate monument has been toppled in a cemetery in the North Carolina city of Greensboro. The News & Record reported Wednesday that the statue of a musket-carrying soldier had stood for a century to mark the graves of about 300 unknown Confederate soldiers. The monument was toppled over the July 4th weekend at the city owned Green Hill Cemetery. City spokesman Jake Keys said it’s unknown who is responsible. The Sons of the Confederate Veterans takes care of the memorial and condemned its toppling in a statement. The monument is owned by the Daughters of the Confederacy. The statue’s future is unknown.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-TOP CHEF-RESTURANT
‘Top Chef’ contestant permanently closes Raleigh restaurant
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A “Top Chef” contestant’s restaurant in North Carolina has permanently closed down due to revenue losses amid the coronavirus pandemic. Katsuji Tanabe told The News & Observer on Wednesday his business partner decided to shut down Raleigh’s High Horse restaurant due to the money losses. The restaurant had opened in November 2019. Tanabe told the newspaper his business partner “didn’t feel like trying to reopen” the restaurant again. Tanabe says High Horse tried offering takeout during restaurant closures. He says diners didn’t want takeout from a restaurant known for its live experiences. Tanabe says he has plans to stay in the Raleigh area.
BOATHOUSE FOR SALE
World War II-era boat house for sale on North Carolina coast
ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (AP) — A World War II-era boat house once used by the U.S. Navy is now being offered as a place to stay while your dream house is being built on the North Carolina coast. The Charlotte Observer reports the one-bedroom building is around 850 square feet and is more of a bunk room. The real estate listing says the house, built in 1943, is about an hour from the Outer Banks and was used for crash boats and Navy crews during the war. However, the boathouse is proving to be a tough sell. It’s been listed for more than 1,500 days.
Several veto override attempts at N.C. legislature fail
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina General Assembly has again fallen short in overriding several of Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s vetoes. Wednesday’s unsuccessful votes for the GOP mean directives within the governor’s COVID-19 executive orders that keep many businesses closed remain intact. Four vetoes upheld in House or Senate votes were related to bills Cooper’s orders during the pandemic. A fifth veto upheld addressed a bill about concealed weapons inside certain churches. A Cooper veto hasn’t been overridden since December 2018 — the result of more Democratic seats in both chambers over the past two years. After Wednesday, lawmakers won’t return to work until September.
Audit: N.C. DOT didn’t follow law, overspent on pay raises
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A state audit has decided the North Carolina Department of Transportation misinterpreted a 2018 state law on employee salaries, leading to $39 million in overspending for worker raises. The report from State Auditor Beth Wood’s office on Wednesday reviewed a pilot program designed to recruit and retain agency employees through flexible salaries. The department disagrees with the performance audit’s findings, saying the rules were followed. This marks the second recent critical audit of DOT, which has been bailed out financially twice since last fall. An earlier audit found the agency overall had overspent by $740 million during a previous fiscal year.
AP Exclusive: ‘Strike for Black Lives’ to highlight racism
NEW YORK (AP) — A national coalition of labor unions, along with racial and social justice organizations, will stage a mass walkout this month to protest against systemic racism. Dubbed the “Strike for Black Lives,” tens of thousands of workers will walk off their jobs on July 20, according to details shared exclusively with The Associated Press. Workers across the economy, including fast food, ride-share services, nursing homes and airports, in more than 25 cities will strike to demand action from corporations and the government to dismantle white supremacy and to ensure the health, safety, and economic well-being of every worker, organizers said.
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