Activity at the General Assembly gained speed this week as the deadline for bill introduction approaches. Legislators in appropriation subcommittees continued to receive presentations regarding the Governor’s budget recommendations.
School Construction Bond (H241)
A school construction bond bill cleared the House this week. If passed by the voters in March 2020, the proposal would produce $1.5 billion for K-12 school construction, and $200 million each for community college and UNC facilities. The Senate has indicated support for school construction but at this point, its leaders support a different funding approach. Governor Roy Cooper supports using bonds for this purpose.
Beer Rules (S246/H363)
A compromise between North Carolina’s craft brewers and beer wholesale distributors was announced Wednesday, ending a battle of many years. The bills would let craft breweries at least double their annual production by creating a new category of "Mid-Sized Independent Breweries" such as NoDa, Olde Meck and Red Oak. The breweries in this new category would be able to self-distribute up to 50,000 barrels a year.
Legislative Transparency (H341)
A number of Democratic House members introduced a bill entitled “North Carolina Sunshine Act.” It would require the General Assembly to adhere to a number of rules to increase transparency including requiring the live streaming of all House and Senate sessions and forbidding legislative sessions before 7 a.m. or after 9 p.m. House leaders do not appear receptive to the proposal as shown by its referral to 12 different committees before being eligible to be heard on the House floor.
For more information, contact the Brooks Pierce Government Affairs Team, linked below.