Lawsuit Contends Legislative Appointments to the Commission Violate Separation of Powers in North Carolina Constitution
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - A local conservation group and landowner today challenged the constitutionality of North Carolina’s Mining and Energy Commission in Wake County Superior Court. Given that a majority of the commission’s members are political appointees by the legislature, the lawsuit charges that the commission violates the separation of powers provision of the North Carolina Constitution.
The North Carolina General Assembly established the MEC in 2012 as an administrative agency in the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, which is part of the executive branch, specifying that its members would be appointed by the state legislature and the governor. Currently, the governor appoints five members to the MEC and the legislature appoints eight members. The separation of powers provision of the North Carolina Constitution provides that the legislative, executive, and judicial powers of the state government shall be forever separate and distinct from each other.
“This attempt by the North Carolina legislature to expand its legislative power and usurp executive authority violates the separation of powers firmly established in our state constitution,” said Derb Carter, senior attorney and director of the North Carolina offices of the Southern Environmental Law Center, which filed the lawsuit on behalf of the Haw River Assembly and Lee County property owner Keely Wood Puricz. “As a result, we have a commission making important decisions about the future of North Carolina that is ultimately accountable to no one.”
Read more: Conservation Groups and Landowner Challenge Constitutionality of North Carolina Mining and Energy...
Published on Friday, January 02 2015 06:45
Written by Web Master
By Billy Ball
Twice now, Pittsboro leaders have approved master plans for the mammoth Chatham Park project. And twice now, they've been sued for their actions.
Last week, citizen group Pittsboro Matters filed a lawsuit against the town, asking a Superior Court judge to invalidate the Chatham County municipality's most recent approval of a master plan for the 7,200-acre project.
Pittsboro Matters includes residents who have frequently criticized the town and developers for its handling of the mixed-use project, thought to be the largest ever proposed in North Carolina.
"The developers want to have it all. They want to have as much flexibility as possible and to hell with the residents and the adjacent property owners," says Amanda Robertson, chairwoman of Pittsboro Matters. Robertson and five other landowners who live near the planned development west of Pittsboro are plaintiffs in the suit.Read article here
Published on Friday, December 26 2014 10:06
Written by Web Master
Posted by Billy Ball @billy_k_ball on Tue, Dec 23, 2014 at 10:31 AM
It may not matter much in the end, but Chatham County commissioners have unanimously adopted a resolution opposing Duke Energy's plans to dump 3 million tons of potentially toxic coal ash in abandoned brick mines in Moncure and Sanford.
Board members called on state lawmakers to act to suspend the energy giant's proposal to dump in Chatham and Lee counties, which could be cleared as soon as early 2015. Read Article Here