The director of Western Carolina University's Center for the Study of Free Enterprise said the state's labor market has partially bounced back, but the state lags behind waiving costly fees for some professionals. WCU's Edward Lopez said that limit the state’s pro-business stance.
"Nurse practitioners, EMTs and paramedics, they face licensure requirements in the state. A vast majority of states have entered into reciprocity agreements where if they satisfy those requirements in one state, the other states will accept you. And for no good reason North Carolina belongs to neither of those compacts," Lopez said.
The state recorded just more than 11,000 unemployment claims for the end of January, down from 14,000 the previous week. While the trend is better than national numbers, it still shows economic tailwinds from the pandemic.