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North Carolina Legislative Report - March 20, 2015

March 20, 2015

The General Assembly convened for the 2015 legislative session on January 14. Lawmakers returned to Raleigh on January 28 to begin the session in earnest. The MVA Public Affairs Legislative Report on North Carolina will be distributed on a weekly basis to keep you up to date on the latest legislative issues facing the state.

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The Governor signed H 157, Amend Environmental Laws, into law this week. 

On The Floor

This week, the Senate passed H 157, Amend Environmental Laws; S 161, Supreme Court Sessions in Morganton; S 185, Clarify Credit for Time Served; S 5, Union County Local Act; S 114, Custodial Parent/Party Cooperate with Child Support; S 139, Town of Sylva/Parking Ordinances; and S 142, Cumberland County Civic Center Commission. 

On Wednesday, March 18, the Senate elected eight members to the UNC Board of Governors.  The eight members include W. Louis Bissette, Jr., John C. Fennebresque, Thomas C. Goolsby, Hiram Frank Grainger, Anna Spangler Nelson, O. Temple Sloan, III, William Webb and Michael Leighton Williford. 

The House passed H 7, Amend Firearm Restoration Law; H 58, Certain Counties Sheriff/Food Purchases; H 102, Utility Vehicles/Law Enforcement; H 5, Military Veterans Special Plate; H 113, Protect Our Students Act; H 18, Planning Year for CIHSs; H 35, Education Innovation Task Force; H 73, Cary Annexation; and H 138, Arts Education Requirement.

On Thursday, March 19, the House elected eight members to the UNC Board of Governors.  The eight members include David Powers, Jim Holmes, Mary Ann Maxwell, Walter Davenport, Pearl Burris-Floyd, John Alex Mitchell, C. Philip Byers, and Joe Thomas Knott, III.

Committees

Joint Appropriations Subcommittee Meetings

The House and Senate continued with joint appropriations subcommittee meetings as they work towards putting together a budget for this year.  Individual subcommittees met this week and reviewed specific budget areas such as Transportation, Health and Human Services, Education, Public Safety, General Government and Information Technology.  These committees took this time to review the current budget and identify key priorities for the upcoming year.  Members will continue their work when they return next week. 

House Education Committee – Community Colleges

The Committee met on Tuesday, March 17, to take up H 129, High Achieving Tuition Scholarships.  H 129 would create a scholarship program for top-performing high school students attending in-state community colleges. The scholarship would cover the cost of four academic semesters of no more than 16 credit hours each.  $2,000,000 would be appropriated in fiscal year 2016-17 and $3,500,000 in reoccurring funds for 2017-18.  H 129 received a favorable report and was referred to the House Education Committee on Universities. 

House Transportation Committee

The Committee met on Tuesday, March 17, to address H 183, Repeal Map Act.  H 183 would repeal the Transportation Corridor Official Map Act.  The act, passed in 1987, set aside corridors for future highways before they became developed.  Members of the public addressed the Committee to complain that the designation has prevented them from selling their property.  The Committee will resume discussion at its next meeting on March 24.

House Education – K-12 Committee

The Committee met on Tuesday, March 17, and approved three bills.  H 13, Amend School Health Assessment Requirement, would require each child presented for admission into the public schools for the first time to submit proof of a health assessment.  It also would require the health assessment transmittal form to be permanently maintained in the child’s official school record.  H 29, Technical Changes to Courses of Study Statute, would make organizational and technical changes to the courses of study statutes.  H 138, Arts Education Requirement, would direct the State Board of Education to require one arts education credit prior to graduation from high school. 

House Health Committee

The Committee met on Wednesday, March 18, and approved H 119, PED Recs/Publicly Funded Substance Abuse Svcs.  H 119 would integrate state-operated alcohol and drug abuse treatment centers into the array of publicly funded substance abuse services managed by local management entities.  This bill also would reallocate direct appropriations for ADATCS to the Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services for management by the LME/MCOS.  Finally, this bill would seek to strengthen the performance management system for publicly funded substance abuse services, as recommended by the Joint Legislative Program Evaluation Oversight Committee.

House Commerce and Job Development Committee

The Committee met on Wednesday, March 18, and approved H 108, Site and Building Development Fund.  The bill would create a fund to provide loans to local government units for the development of sites and buildings.

House Banking Committee

The Committee met on Thursday, March 19, and discussed three bills.  The Committee discussed, but took no action on H 104, Eliminate Audited Financial Statement Req., and H 105, Reduce Mortgage Lender Surety Bonds.  The Committee approved H 106, Amend Banking Commission Membership.  H 106 would convert one of the positions on the Commission currently held by a public member so that it is a position that must be held by a person licensed as a mortgage loan originator.

House Environment Committee

The Committee met on Thursday, March 19, to hear a report from DENR about risk-based remediation of contaminated sites.  No votes were taken.

Senate Select Committee on UNC Board of Governors

The Committee met Monday, March 16, and approved a slate of nominees for consideration.  The slate included W. Louis Bissette, Jr., Robert J. Brown, Jesse James Cureton, Brenda B. Diggs, Ericka Ellis-Stewart, John C. Fennebresque, Thomas C. Goolsby, Hiram Frank Grainger, Benjamin P. Jenkins, III, Charles Bryan McCurry, Jr., Anna Spangler Nelson, O. Temple Sloan, III, William Webb, Michael Leighton Williford and Terry Kevin Yeargan. 

Senate Finance Committee

The Committee met on Tuesday, March 17, and Wednesday, March 18.  On Tuesday, the Committee continued its discussion with respect to State economic development incentive programs and heard from Secretary Skvarla of the Department of Commerce.  On Wednesday, the Committee heard two bills.  H 41, Revenue Laws Technical Changes, contains two parts – technical corrections nearly identical to those previously approved by the Senate in S 19, and an update to the Internal Revenue Code reference that is identical to that previously approved by the Senate in S 20.  The Committee approved H 41.  The Committee also had discussions, but took no action, on S 305, NCEMPA Asset Sale.  That bill would enact legislative changes needed to effectuate the sale of the ownership interest in electric generation facilities of a municipal power agency to an investor-owned utility.

Senate Commerce Committee

The Committee met on Wednesday, March 18, to discuss S 305, NCEMPA Asset Sale.  S 305 would allow for the sale of the NC Eastern Municipal Power Agency’s ownership of power plants to Duke Energy Progress.  The bill was up for discussion only and will be voted on at next week’s meeting on Wednesday, March 25.

In The News

WRAL: Records show big travel costs for some state agency leaders

Raleigh News & Observer: State House elects 8 to UNC board, including 5 new members

Charlotte Business Journal: McCrory bashes N.C. Senate incentives plan; Berger swings back

Raleigh News & Observer: NC Senate, McCrory at odds on incentives, corporate taxes

Triangle Business Journal: N.C. Commerce Sec. Skvarla talks DENR, the Senate, JDIG and manufacturing at TBJ Power Breakfast

Raleigh News & Observer: McCrory says he wants plan to help NC cities patch budgets

WRAL: NC still lags in teacher pay, student spending

Charlotte Observer: Charlotte sees larger budget shortfall than after recession

Charlotte Business Journal: Judges rule N.C. coal ash commission set-up is unconstitutional

Calendar

Mon, March 23, 2015

12:00 PM

 Rep. Hall - Press Conference

 Press Room LB

7:00 PM

Session Convenes (House)

 House

7:00 PM

Session Convenes (Senate)

 Senate


Tue, March 24, 2015

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Transportation (Joint) (House)

 1228/1327 LB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Department of Transportation (Senate)

 1228/1327 LB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Justice and Public Safety (House)

 415 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Capital (House)

423 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, General Government (Joint) (House)

425 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on General Government and Information Technology (Senate)

425 LOB

8:30 AM

Finance (House)

New Historic Preservation Tax Credit. (H152)
Omnibus Economic Development Improvements. (H89)

 544 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Health and Human Services (Joint) (House)

 643 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Health and Human Services (Senate)

 643 LOB

10:00 AM

 Pensions and Retirement (House)

Amend Mand. Retire. Age/Judges & Magistrates. (H50)
Charlotte Firefighters' Retirement. (H70)

 415 LOB

10:30 AM

 Rep. Adcock - Press Conference

 Press Room LB

11:00 AM

 Education - Universities (House)

SOG Pilot Project Standards. (H72)
High Achieving Tuition Scholarships. (H129)

 643 LOB

12:00 PM

 State and Local Government (Senate)

Jacksonville Occupancy Tax. (S46)
Cities/Means For Activating Parking Meters. (S52)
Transferred Properties in Corrected Revals. (S159)
Haywood Town Square Conveyance. (S73)

423 LOB

12:00 PM

 Transportation (House)

Insurance and Safety Inspection/Mopeds. (H148)
Repeal Map Act. (H183)

 643 LOB

1:00 PM

Insurance -- CORRECTED (House)

Property Insurance Ratemaking Reform. (H151)
Insurance Technical Changes.-AB (H288)

 1228/1327 LB

1:00 PM

Finance (Senate)

Lake Santeetlah Occupancy Tax Authorization. (S140)
Mt. Gilead Charter Revision & Consolidation. (S156)
NCEMPA Asset Sale. (S305)

 544 LOB

1:30 PM

Speaker Tim Moore - Press Conference

 Press Room LB


Wed, March 25, 2015

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Transportation (Joint) (House)

 1228/1327 LB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Department of Transportation (Senate)

 1228/1327 LB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Agriculture and Natural and Economic Resources (Joint) (House)

421 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Natural and Economic Resources (Senate)

421 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, General Government (Joint) (House)

425 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on General Government and Information Technology (Senate)

425 LOB

8:30 AM

Elections (House)

Cherokee Co. Bd. of Ed. Elections. (H110)
Stanly Co Bd. of Ed. Recall. (H111)
Stanly Co Bd of Ed Election Method. (H112)
Rockingham Co. School Bd. (H189)

 544 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Health and Human Services (Joint) (House)

 643 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Health and Human Services (Senate)

 643 LOB

10:00 AM

 Judiciary IV (House)

DOT Condemnation Changes. (H127)
Amend Gaston Foster Care Ombudsman Prog. (H12)
Landlord/Tenant-Foreclosure & Evict. Changes. (H174)

 1228/1327 LB

10:00 AM

 Senator Barringer's Press Conf.

 Press Room LB

11:00 AM

 Aging (House)

Senior Tax Deduction for Medical Expenses. (H46)

423 LOB

11:00 AM

 Education/Higher Education (Senate)

State Advisory Council on Indian Education. (S97)
Charter School Grade Level Expansion. (S176)

 544 LOB

11:00 AM

 Commerce and Job Development (House)

 643 LOB

12:00 PM

 Workforce and Economic Development (Senate)

 544 LOB

1:00 PM

 Public Utilities (House)

Utility Line Relocation/School Board. (H86)

 643 LOB


Thu, March 26, 2015

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Department of Transportation (Senate)

 1228/1327 LB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Agriculture and Natural and Economic Resources (Joint) (House)

421 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Natural and Economic Resources (Senate)

421 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, General Government (Joint) (House)

425 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on General Government and Information Technology (Senate)

425 LOB

8:30 AM

Appropriations, Health and Human Services (Joint) (House)

 643 LOB

8:30 AM

Joint Appropriations on Health and Human Services (Senate)

 643 LOB

10:00 AM

 Environment (House)

 544 LOB

12:00 PM

 Homeland Security, Military, and Veterans Affairs (House)

421 LOB


Wed, April 01, 2015

12:30 PM

 Rep. Gill - Press Conference

 Press Room LB


Tue, April 07, 2015

11:30 AM

 Rep. Fisher - Press Conference

 Press Room LB


Tue, April 14, 2015

10:30 PM

 Rep. McGrady - Press Conference

 Press Room LB


Tue, April 21, 2015

11:30 AM

 Rep. Fisher - Press Conference

 Press Room LB


Mon, April 27, 2015

4:00 PM

Joint Legislative Program Evaluation Oversight Committee, Subcommittee on Personal Services Contracts

423 LOB

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