The General Assembly leaders meeting to resolve differences between the House and Senate versions of the budget are working with two deeply flawed proposals. As our friend Chris Fitzsimon at NC Policy Watch explains, the plans range from spiteful to dishonest. He writes in part: Senate leaders included breathtakingly bad policy decisions in their budget including one provision taking food benefits fully funded by the federal government away from 133,000 people and another that bans wind farms in the state. The already bad Senate plan was made even worse in…
By George Reed, Retired Executive Director Bills are being introduced at a rapid pace as the Senate’s deadline for new bills has passed and the House’s deadline on non-money approaches. This Raleigh Report and another one later in the week will try to catch up with the flood of bills. Newly Introduced Bills CHILDREN AND FAMILIES S 439, Eliminate NC Pre-K Waitlist Statewide, would appropriate $36 million over the next two fiscal years to eliminate the waiting list for the NC Pre-Kindergarten Program (formerly known as More at Four). Introduced…
The General Assembly leadership is committed to having this short session truly be short, and there’s talk of adjourning by early July. In fact, an adjournment resolution was introduced yesterday with a target date of June 19. This session, which starts in May of even-numbered years, is primarily to tweak the second year of the budget adopted the year before. In addition, certain bills which were introduced last year (mostly ones which passed in one house) can be considered. For a new bill to be introduced this year, it must fit into one of a few specific categories, with most new bills having to do with budgetary matters or coming from a study commission which met during the interim. Finally, pending veto overrides are also thought by the House and Senate leadership to be eligible for consideration.
Also in this Raleigh Report: Guns in Church, Gambling, Death Penalty, Boards and Commissions and more.
State Deadline Passes and Most New Bills Introduced
New Bills Edition: Attack on Workers Comp by New Bill H 709/S 544 misnamed Protect and Put NC Back to Work.
New bills on the budget, care of creation, criminal justice, election and campaign law, gambling, guns, health and health care, immigration, mental health, developmental disabilities, substance abuse services, public eduction, and taxes.
Governor Bev Perdue on Saturday vetoed H 2, the misnamed “Protect Health Care Freedom” bill. (It should be called the “Freedom to be Uninsured and Unable to Get Health Care” bill.) The bill was an attack on federal health care reform and purported to remove North Carolinians from the mandated purchase of health insurance, which is the basis of federal reform which will move millions of uninsured Americans into the ranks of the insured.
Bills needing immediate attention; Updates on other bills; Information on contacting legislators.
Yesterday was the deadline for Governor Perdue to sign or veto bills passed by the General Assembly in the last weeks of the session. Interestingly, yesterday she let a bill become law without her signature.Also in this Raleigh Report: Domestic Violence, Environment, Gambling, and more.
Unfortunately, the childhood obesity epidemic is drastically affecting North Carolina. In 2009, North Carolina ranked 14th worst in the nation in childhood overweight and obesity for children ages 10-17, with more than one-third (33.5%) of our children being overweight or obese.
Also in this Raleigh Report: Domestic Violence, Environment, Gambling, Health, Housing, People with Disabilities, Public Education, and more.
Let’s get one thing straight: there is no worthwhile distinction to be made between video poker, currently banned in North Carolina with one notable exception, and the electronic “sweepstakes” game parlors sweeping the state.
North Carolina faces a financial situation that is easy to summarize: Tax cuts during the last half of the ’90’s have left the state with a revenue stream inadequate to provide the services which are expected by the state’s citizens and to respond to unexpected emergencies. However, because the state’s political climate is less than hospitable towards tax increases, solutions to this situation will be more difficult to implement.
Oliver Wendell Holmes once stated that “taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society.” In order for a civilized society to thrive, taxes at all levels of government must be sufficient to meet the legitimate needs of society, especially the modern equivalents of the biblical widows and orphans.