Brooks Pierce Capital Dispatch: Updates from the NC General Assembly and Governor’s Office, November 5, 2021
This week at the General Assembly, legislators continued to negotiate the budget bill with the Governor and members passed new congressional and legislative district maps.
Legislative leaders and Gov. Cooper, along with their staffs, continued to discuss the proposed biennial budget bill (S 105) behind closed doors this week. Press reports suggest that significant issues remain unresolved and some legislative leaders mentioned the possibility of the General Assembly passing a budget bill prior to an agreement with the Governor. Legislators are not expected to vote on bills during the week of Nov. 8 and legislative leaders have indicated a vote on the budget bill could occur during the week of Nov. 15.
Among the sticking points are the amount of education spending, Medicaid expansion and amount of tax reductions. Although a new budget bill was not enacted before the end of the state’s fiscal year on June 30, state government operations are continuing pursuant to state law with spending at the FY 21 recurring funding levels.
This week, Legislators passed new legislative and congressional election maps. The bills are not reviewable by the Governor. This process occurs every 10 years after the Census. Litigation over the maps is expected with a lawsuit challenging them already filed.
At the current time, the filing period for candidates is from Dec. 6-17, 2021 with primary elections slated for March 8, 2022. Given likely litigation over the new election maps, that time window could change.
Some Notable Pending Bills
In addition to the significant funding and policy issues that will likely be addressed in the budget bill (S 105), a number of other notable bills are awaiting action. Among those are:
- S 688, which would authorize sports wagering—Senate has passed; House Commerce Committee passed the bill this week. It is uncertain whether the bill will be considered further during 2021.
- H 954, which would authorize and regulate video lottery terminals—House Commerce Committee has passed; pending in House Finance Committee
- S 711, which would authorize the use of marijuana for certain medical purposes—Three Senate committees have passed it; pending in Senate Rules Committee
For more information, contact a member of the Brooks Pierce Government Affairs Team.