GREENSBORO, N.C. -- On Tuesday morning, WFMY News 2's Frank Mickens interviewed N.C. Governor Pat McCrory before he spoke with the NC Farm Bureau at the Koury Convention Center in Greensboro.
The topics he discussed with McCrory include:
1. Is Boeing moving to the Triad?
2. Finding money for teacher raises hinges on trimming the monster Medicaid budget.
3. Reports about recruiting a major automotive manufacturer to the Triad.
4. Can he guarantee the middle class will not pay higher taxes?
Here are some highlights of the interview:
FRANK: First question is a question many people in Greensboro, Guilford County and the Triad want to know. Is Boeing coming to the Triad?
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: Well, I'm not going to respond to any specific economic development question. I will say this that Greensboro and the entire Triad's on the radar of many companies that are looking at North Carolina. And I guarantee you that this governor and my commerce secretary Sharon Decker are selling Greensboro every opportunity we can.
FRANK: So is that say there have been conversations with Boeing?
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: I'm not going to respond to any specific economic development question regarding any one company. I will say we are working on many many leads with many different companies throughout the United States and the world.
FRANK: There's also been some talk about the potential for an automotive plant or an automotive facility perhaps in Randolph or Chatham Counties. Has that been broached as well?
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: I've talked to your leaders about potential future strategies on how we can recruit major automotive to North Carolina. And we think certain corridors in the triad area are best suited for major automobile recruitment efforts in the future.
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: We're working through DOT to support future airport infrastructure needs with roads and runways to use as a selling tool for future companies considering North Carolina and the Greensboro area."
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: "I came into a situation in which our unemployment rate was the 5th highest in the nation. We're now not even in the top 10. But that's not good enough. Our unemployment rate has gone from 9.4 percent to 8 percent. I want to get way down.
FRANK: So regarding your policies, it's well-written that there are critics. And you've had these Moral Monday protests, which grew and grew and grew over time. Do you particularly care that much about what your critics are saying and how they feel about you as a person?
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: Absolutely I care. But I care for people who want to develop solutions.
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: I surround myself with problem solvers, not just people who complain and whine and criticize, but people who want to come up with long-term solutions to North Carolina's economic crisis and to our education crisis.
FRANK: How do you bring those folks into the tent?
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: I actually have. I've met with, when I was Governor-Elect, I met with (NC NAACP President) Reverend Barber. But what I'm seeking is solutions, not just rhetoric.
FRANK: There are a lot of teachers, a lot of principals, a lot of educators in general that were excited to hear that education's going to be a top priority for you...
GOVERNOR MCCRORY: (interrupts) Well education's been a top priority and that's why we emphasized vocational training and we're going to reduce the number of testing. But now our number one goal, which my predecessor wasn't successful in doing, is to find money to have a long-term compensation plan for teachers, not just next year, but in the future.
WFMY News 2