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Submitted by WWAY on Tue, 10/16/2007 - 5:21pm.

RALEIGH -- The State Board of Optometry has scheduled a hearing to consider disciplinary action against optometrist and former House Speaker Jim Black. The 72-year-old Black pleaded guilty in federal court earlier this year to taking thousands of dollars from a group of chiropractors. In state court, he was fined $1 million after he agreed to accept punishment on charges of bribing a House member in exchange for his support for speaker in 2003. Black is now serving more than five years in federal prison. His hearing before the Optometry Board is set for December 12. Board official John Robinson says Black has had the optometry license more than 40 years and refuses to surrender it. Black operated an optometry practice in Charlotte and Matthews while also serving in the State House. (Copyright 2007 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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