North Carolinians could vote earlier than usual in future primary elections for president and statewide offices.
A House committee voted Thursday for a bill to permanently change the primaries from the Tuesday following the first Monday in May to the same time-frame in March.
The legislature shifted the 2016 primary to March 15 so the state could wield more influence over the Democratic and Republican presidential nominations.
The new proposed date would be used starting in 2018. The change doesn't apply to municipal elections that occur in odd-numbered years.
A March primary would also mean incumbents and potential candidates must decide sooner whether they'll run, with filing season beginning in December.
In April, the Senate passed the bill, which heads next to the House floor.