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Rural Infrastructure Authority Takes Over For NC Rural Center

6:34 PM, Dec 11, 2013   |    comments
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RALEIGH, N.C. -- 2 Wants To Know tracks your tax dollars and how they are spent. Months ago we revealed spending problems with the North Carolina Rural Center. The Rural Center was a non-profit that doled out state and federal grants to businesses in rural areas. State Auditors questioned the Rural Center president's salary and the effectiveness of the grants the organization awarded. Eventually they stripped the Rural Center of their state funding.

The state has been trying to figure out what to do with grants that were sitting there waiting to be awarded. The solution - create a new board to oversee distributing the funds: the Rural Infrastructure Authority. The board will operate under the state's Commerce Department. That means more oversight and controls than the Rural Center had.

Governor Pat McCrory appointed the board members last week. Four of the 15 members are from the Triad. 2 Wants To Know caught up Pamela Cundiff. She's chair of the Rockingham County Partnership for Economic Development & Tourism and says the way to overcome past problems is to be transparent in the future.

"Well partially because of that stigma, but because that's what people have come to expect and are entitled to. They need to know where their money is going. Let's face it, this is mine and yours," Cundiff said.

The new board expects to start giving out money in the next few weeks.

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