In The News
Education Lottery transfers $124.3 million to state
The North Carolina Education Lottery made its second transfer of lottery revenues to the state for fiscal year 2011, transferring on Tuesday a total of $124.3 million.
Most of the money, $102 million, was transferred to the State Education Lottery Fund to support the education initiatives that the lottery serves, including teacher salaries for grades K-3, school construction projects, the More at Four preschool program for at-risk four-year-olds and college scholarships based on financial need. After the latest transfer is accounted for, the Education Lottery has raised $201.4 million for education in fiscal year 2011, contributed $1.76 billion to education since the lottery started in March 2006, and exceeded $5.57 billion in total sales, as of Dec. 31, 2010.
The remaining portion of the transfer, $22.3 million, goes as directed by the N.C. General Assembly in its budget for fiscal year 2011 to cover a shortfall in federal Medicaid monies. Legislators directed the lottery to provide $35 million to help cover that shortfall.
Overall, about 95 cents of every dollar spent on the lottery stays in North Carolina. Currently, about 58 cents of each dollar goes to pay prizes to winners, 30 cents to beneficiaries and 7 cents to retailers. Of the remaining portion, 1 cent of each dollar is spent on advertising, 1.59 cents on the gaming system operated under a contract with G-Tech and the remaining 2.5 cents goes to administrative costs, including salaries, benefits and offices.
A county-by-county breakdown of how Education Lottery proceeds were distributed for fiscal year 2010 is available in the "Where The Money Goes" section of the NCEL's website at http://www.nc-educationlottery.org. Overall, lottery proceeds represented about 5.6 percent of the state's $7.8 billion public education budget.
In other lottery news, former N.C. Rep. Cullie Tarlton, of Blowing Rock, was appointed by Gov. Bev Perdue to the N.C. Lottery Commission, filling an unexpired term that ends on Aug. 31, 2012.
Tarleton was recommended for the job by Speaker Joe Hackney of the N.C. House of Representatives.
The nine-member lottery commission supervises and administers the work of the North Carolina Education Lottery.
LMC opens pet friendly residence hall
Lees-McRae College is going to the dogs ... and cats, birds, fish, ferrets and hamsters. With the opening of the spring 2011 semester also comes the opening of the college's first pet-friendly residence hall.
Bentley Residence Hall opened its doors on Jan. 9 to its newest two-legged and four-legged residents for the inaugural semester of the Lees-McRae College (LMC) Pet Friendly Program.
Students living in Bentley Hall went through a thorough application process and are now allowed to bring their pets from home to school with them to live in their rooms. Under the new policy, qualifying students can have fish, hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs, birds, ferrets, cats, dogs - anything under 40 pounds. Non-domestic pets are not allowed. Previously, students were only allowed to have fish in residence hall rooms.
The idea to make Lees-McRae College pet-friendly is part of president Barry Buxton's 20-point revitalization plan for the college.
The Lees-McRae College Pet Policy allows resident students the privilege of bringing a family pet to live on campus while the student is enrolled in classes. It is the purpose of the Lees-McRae College Pet Council to provide a safe environment for members of the Lees-McRae College community, and to protect, maintain and regulate the pet ownership privilege enjoyed by members of the community.
"Now I have two alarms," joked Chazlyn Thomas, owner of Beeb, a miniature dachshund. "When I ignore my alarm clock, my dog licks my face and my nose until I get up. She really cares about my education."
For more information, visit http://www.lmc.edu.
Blue Ridge Electric fulfills 2009 BRAHM pledge
The Blowing Rock Art and History Museum received $5,000 last week from the Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation, which completes a 2009 pledge to be directed toward the Museum's energy savings initiatives.
Blue Ridge Electric made the pledge to be fulfilled upon the purchase of materials used for the museum's energy efficient components. The first significant qualifying features were the Energy Star windows that were purchased and installed in December 2010, which will help keep heat out during the summer and heat in during the winter, decreasing the energy required to heat and cool the building.
The final stages of construction will also see the following components installed: Gypsum board walls that boast a high recyclable content and regionally produced material; closed-cell foam insulation, known for its ability to produce a tight seal, which will offer significant thermal benefits and provide excellent humidity control; Marmoleum, a product similar to linoleum but made from renewable, natural ingredients, will be used for the flooring in the Education Center and installed with solvent-free adhesives; Corian countertops with virtually no VOCs and no heavy metals or carcinogens in the pigments and featuring a high recycled content; low-flow toilets and urinals that abide by the flushing performance guidelines established by the EPA Water Sense program; and all low-VOC/low-odor paint.
For more information, visit http://www.blowingrockmusuem.org or call (828) 295-9099.