The Daily Reflector : Fighting back against Farmville right thing to do

December 31, 2021 | By PLF

By Mark Shirley The restaurant business is hard work. Long hours, narrow profit margins, fierce competition — given the challenges, it’s not surprising that 60 percent of new restaurants fail in their first year. I was prepared for all those challenges and more when I launched my barbeque business, Ole Time Smokehouse, in a food … ...


State regulators are preventing a New Orleans social worker from helping families with special needs children

November 18, 2021 | By NATHANIEL HAMILTON

When Ursula Newell-Davis of New Orleans sees someone with a problem, she looks for a way to help—it’s in her nature. That’s what led her to her calling as a social worker, where Ursula has worked the past two decades with special needs children and their families. But Ursula has her own problem: the Louisiana … ...


The North State Journal : Food truck pitmaster fights Farmville’s protectionist laws for right to earn an honest living

November 09, 2021 | By JESSICA THOMPSON

Given all the heat around political debates these days, it’s understandable that people try to avoid what’s known as the third rail of North Carolina politics: the barbeque question. For over a century, North Carolinians have debated whether Lexington-style or Eastern-style barbeque represents the true Carolina barbeque. But barbeque hi ...


Despite a pandemic and excess local regulation, food truck owner Mark Shirley refuses to abandon his dream

October 13, 2021 | By BRITTANY HUNTER

No one ever starts a business with the intent to fail. But thanks to Farmville, North Carolina’s new food truck regulations, one man’s burgeoning business stands in jeopardy. It takes a great deal of courage to leave your established career and follow your bliss, but that is exactly what Mark Shirley did. For years, Mark … ...


Why is it so hard to be a California farmer?

September 20, 2021 | By ETHAN BLEVINS

In August, California’s State Water Resources Control Board voted unanimously to drastically reduce farmers’ rights to draw water from the state’s two largest rivers. The decision was just the latest in a series of blows to thousands of California farmers who are struggling to keep their farms alive, thanks to shrinking water allo ...


The Hill : Biden’s economic reform ought to consider certificate of need, too

August 23, 2021 | By ANASTASIA BODEN

President Biden recently called on the federal government to increase competition in the U.S. economy as a way of boosting wages, increasing employment, and allowing people to move between jobs. One of his biggest targets was occupational licensing, which has become a hot topic thanks to egregious examples such as states requiring thousands of hour ...


One Cuban immigrant’s story reminds us of the importance of fighting for individual liberty

August 09, 2021 | By BRITTANY HUNTER

Anton spent most of his life in Cuba before political oppression pushed him to immigrate to America in 2013. It was not a lack of love and respect for his country that caused Anton to leave. On the contrary, Cuba was his beloved home. He never dreamed he would have to leave his life behind, … ...


In an (almost) post-pandemic America, people need theater now more than ever

May 18, 2021 | By BRITTANY HUNTER

There is something particularly magical about live theater. Many of us can probably remember the first show we saw, how the songs or dialogue made us feel, how we related to a character on stage. Theater, it could be argued, connects individuals to the human experience unlike any other form of art. There is a … ...


The Hill : After losing a congressional seat, California needs a course correction

May 17, 2021 | By ANASTASIA BODEN

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, California’s leading exports are computers and electronic products. But these days, it feels like the top exports are jobs, residents and misguided public policy. Companies such as Tesla, Hewlett-Packard and Oracle — once staples of Silicon Valley — are moving to more emp ...