Axios Raleigh

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April 25, 2024

🤙 Hello, Thursday. How are you?

🌞 Weather: Sunny with a high near 72°.

🎂 Happy birthday to our Axios Raleigh member Regina Oliver!

Today's Smart Brevity™️ count is 958 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Florida's new abortion law could further strain N.C. clinics

Data: Guttmacher Institute; Note: Data unavailable for D.C.; Map: Simran Parwani/Axios Visuals

Florida's upcoming six-week abortion ban could put even more pressure on North Carolina clinics already seeing an influx of out-of-state patients, Axios Charlotte's Alexandria Sands reports.

  • Last year, 35% of patients who received an abortion in North Carolina traveled from out of state, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

The big picture: Florida, where there were more than 80,000 abortions in 2023, will have a six-week abortion ban effective May 1.

  • After that, North Carolina will be the closest place Floridians can get an abortion after six weeks' gestation. North Carolina allows access up to 12 weeks of pregnancy.
  • Florida accounts for about one in 12 abortions in the country.

What they're saying: To prepare for a potential surge in new patients from Florida, providers are working to free up capacity. They're repeating what was done in July 2023 when North Carolina implemented a new requirement of having an additional in-person appointment to see a doctor before an abortion procedure.

  • Wait times are around two weeks currently.
  • "Despite that commitment, we have to hold the doors open for as many people as possible, that is not going to be enough to stem the tide of growing demand from across the region," says Alison Kiser, Planned Parenthood South Atlantic senior director of external affairs.

Read the full story

2. UNC Health medical plane crashes at RDU

Aerial view of Raleigh-Durham International Airport. Photo: Daniel Slim/AFP via Getty Images

A UNC Health medical plane crashed at Raleigh-Durham International Airport Wednesday morning, shutting down air traffic and leaving two injured.

The latest: UNC Health confirmed on Wednesday that the plane was carrying Paul Chelminski, an internal medicine physician at UNC. Chelminski was returning from Wilmington, where he had given a lecture at Novant Health New Hanover Regional Medical Center.

Both Chelminski and Art Johnson, the pilot, were injured in the crash.

  • Chelminski was transported to UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill and was discharged later in the afternoon.
  • Johnson was taken to Duke University Hospital in Durham, and was in fair condition, a UNC Health spokesperson said.

The crash happened around 10:10am on a secondary runway at the airport, WRAL reported.

  • The primary runway was temporarily closed after the crash, delaying dozens of flights.

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3. The Tea: Microsoft pulls out of Morrisville office space

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

❌ Microsoft is terminating an office lease at Perimeter Park in Morrisville and putting more office space there up for sublease. (Triangle Business Journal 🔒)

🥪 Raleigh's Seaboard Cafe, a lunch counter next to Logan's Garden Shop, will close in September when Logan's moves. (News & Observer 🔒)

A 74-year-old man was charged with shooting another man on Shaw University's campus in downtown Raleigh. (WRAL)

🐺 N.C. State chancellor Randy Woodson has used his steady temperament and ability to navigate political controversies to lead the university for 15 years — nearly three times longer than the average university head. (The Assembly 🔒)

🍕The owners of the Village Diner in Hillsborough have opened the West Hillsborough Pizzeria next to the diner. (WCHL)

4. 💰 Cooper's budget calls for teacher raises, pause on school vouchers

Photo illustration: Allie Carl/Axios; Photo: Raleigh News & Observer/Getty Images

Gov. Roy Cooper released his proposals for the state budget on Wednesday, calling for a big investment in public schools and a moratorium on private school vouchers.

Driving the news: Cooper unveiled the $34.5 billion plan at the start of the N.C. General Assembly's short session, in which the Republican-controlled legislature could pass a bill adjusting the state's spending.

Reality check: Cooper's proposal is just that — a proposal. With Republicans having a veto-proof majority in both chambers of the N.C. General Assembly, they can pass a budget without his involvement.

  • Republicans have previously expressed interest in adding more money for private school vouchers, raises for state workers and cutting taxes.

What's inside Cooper's proposal: An average 8.5% raise for teachers, a 5% raise for other state employees and a $1,500 retention bonus for most state employees.

  • It also includes a moratorium on adding money to North Carolina's Opportunity Scholarships for private schools. Cooper said at a press conference the legislature's efforts with vouchers are "trying to choke the life out of public schools."
  • A $745 million investment into early childhood education that comes as federal funding expires for many childhood education centers.
  • A $2.5 billion school construction bond on the ballot in the fall to fund construction for 90 new elementary and middle schools across the state.

Read more

5. Spirits-free bar closes months after opening

Umbrella Dry Bar founder Meg Paradise. Photo: Greg Mintel

Umbrella Dry Bar is closing its space in downtown Raleigh just months after opening, founder Meg Paradise shared on social media.

Why it matters: The non-alcoholic cocktail bar, which opened on New Year's Eve in the former Garland restaurant space, was the first bar of its kind in the area, looking to tap into a growing movement of people pulling back on their alcohol consumption.

Driving the news: Paradise said in a video shared on Instagram Tuesday that Umbrella Dry Bar is not renewing its lease at 14 W. Martin St. and will close on Friday.

  • Instead, she said, the business will pivot to a pop-up model as it continues "to look for our forever home."

6. 🏒 Watch parties for the Stanley Cup playoffs

Fans cheer during the Stanley Cup playoff game between the Carolina Hurricanes and New York Islanders in Raleigh. Photo: Grant Halverson/Getty Images

With the Carolina Hurricane's opening playoff series shifting up to Long Island, it's time to find a watch party for the next two games.

Where to go: Carolina Ale House in downtown Raleigh will host the official watch parties for Game 3 on Thursday (which starts at 7:30pm) and Game 4 on Saturday (2pm).

  • Members of the Canes organization and Stormy the Ice Hog will be there, as well as the team's iconic siren that plays before the start of periods.
  • On Saturday, the watch party will spill out onto Glenwood South, with Glenwood Avenue closing and a giant television being put up.

🐺 Zachery wants to see the new litter of red wolf pups at the Museum of Life and Science.

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This newsletter was edited by Katie Peralta Soloff and copy edited by Lucia Maher.