NC General Assembly

Politics & Government
6:32 am
Wed June 26, 2013

Supreme Court Decision Prompts New Look At NC Voting Laws

The North Carolina Legislative Building
Credit Dave Crosby / flickr

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down part of the Voting Rights Act affects a number of southern states, including North Carolina.

Previously, the U.S. Department of Justice or a federal court in Washington had to approve or pre-clear state laws that affect voting, including redistricting. It also had to approve local and municipal decisions in 40 North Carolina counties with a history of voting discrimination.

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Politics & Government
5:06 am
Tue June 25, 2013

State Senate Approves Bill Loosening Restrictions On Landfills

Credit NC General Assembly

Lawmakers in the state senate have passed a measure that scales back restrictions on landfills.

Senate Bill 328 would reduce buffers between wildlife refuges, state parks, and game lands. Garbage trucks transporting material to landfills would no longer have to be leak-proof, but only leak-resistant.

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Education
3:31 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

Senate Budget Threatens Teacher Tenure

A Guilford County teacher.
Credit Guilford County Schools

Lawmakers in Raleigh may end tenure for public school teachers. That’s if a provision in the proposed Senate budget remains in the final budget under negotiation.

Tenure for public school teachers isn’t the same as tenure for college professors. For one, it’s much easier to fire public school teachers with tenure or, as it’s described in the education world, to “counsel them out of teaching.”

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Politics & Government
3:41 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

State Lawmakers Nearing Consensus On Tax Reform

Credit NC General Assembly

State lawmakers say they're nearing consensus on tax reform. Speaker of the House Thom Tillis says the House and the Senate are close to an agreement.

Potential tax code changes could change the level of funding state budget writers would be able to spend. But there's not much time left before the fiscal year ends for lawmakers to agree on a state budget plan.

Tillis says legislators plan to take that up very soon.

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Politics & Government
5:30 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

North Carolina's First Lady Lobbies Against Puppy Mills

First Lady Ann McCrory supports a bill that would establish standards for commercial dog breeders.
Credit Jessica Jones

North Carolina's First Lady, Ann McCrory, is lobbying to get a bill passed at the General Assembly that would require large commercial dog breeding operations to adhere to minimum standards of care.

Commercial breeders with more than ten breeding females would have to provide food and water, daily exercise, appropriate housing, and veterinary care and humane euthanasia if needed. The measure has already passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support. But it hasn't been brought to the floor by Senate leaders yet. In her first press conference since moving to the governor's mansion, Mrs. McCrory told reporters she hopes that happens soon.

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Politics & Government
7:16 am
Wed June 19, 2013

Senate Lawmakers Postpone Final Vote On Tax Plan

Senate President Phil Berger
Credit Dave DeWitt

State legislators have delayed a final vote on a bill that seeks to change North Carolina's tax code.

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Politics & Government
6:59 am
Fri June 14, 2013

Senate Passes Handgun Bill

Credit Dave DeWitt

State senators have passed a measure that would do away with handgun permits and add more places people can carry or store firearms.

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Politics & Government
4:49 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

Rucho Resigns From Senate Committee

Senator Bob Rucho
Credit NC General Assembly

The co-chair of the Senate Finance Committee has resigned from that group to protest changes to his legislative body's tax reform plan.

Senator Bob Rucho submitted his resignation letter to Senate President Phil Berger earlier this week. Rucho was the main architect of a Senate tax reform proposal that would have expanded the sales tax while lowering personal and corporate income tax rates.

But Berger put forth an alternate plan that would repeal corporate taxes without expanding the sales tax base as extensively. Rucho says he was disappointed by the move.

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Politics & Government
4:44 pm
Wed June 12, 2013

House Lawmakers Begin Debating Budget

Credit Jessica Jones

State lawmakers in the House have begun to debate their budget proposal.  Republican representative Nelson Dollar told his fellow lawmakers the budget plan is a good one.

"We are pleased to have a new governor here in Raleigh. We think that the spirit of reform has come to our state capitol. We believe our budget has caught the winds of reform and is moving us forward," said Dollar.

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Politics & Government
4:48 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Lawmakers Continue To Debate Three Tax Reform Plans

N.C. General Assembly, State Legislature
Credit Dave DeWitt

  The General Assembly is in its last few weeks of budget discussions, with tax overhauls in mind.  Three proposals are still on the table.  All of them cut the corporate and individual income tax rates while expanding the sales tax to cover more services. 

Alexandra Sirota of the liberal North Carolina Justice Center says that disproportionately benefits the wealthy.

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