WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Dale Folwell is no stranger to how Raleigh works. He served four terms in the North Carolina House of Representatives, and for the past three years he worked as the Assistant Secretary of Commerce. The Republican from Winston-Salem is running to be the next state Treasurer, to succeed Janet Cowell who declined to run for re-election. Folwell is running against Dan Blue III, the Democratic nominee.
The Treasurer's Office is in charge of managing the pension system and administering the healthcare system for state employees. Folwell's campaign says the pension plan, worth $90 billion, is underfunded and has not earned it's projected 7.25 percent rate of return in 15 years. The health plan that covers teachers, troopers and other state workers is in debt by $28 billion dollars. Folwell believes it is a result of money was never set aside properly.
Folwell is also a Certified Public Accountant, and believes that experience can also be helpful as state Treasurer. According to a campaign news release, Folwell has pledged to institute the following initiatives if he is elected:
* Freeze family state health care premiums for four years;
* Reduce fees North Carolina pays to Wall Street to manage the state's pension fund by $100 million; and
* Pledge not to serve on any paid corporate board of directors while serving as N.C. Treasurer.