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View NCGA Bill Details2023-2024 Session
Senate Bill 869 (Public) Filed Thursday, May 2, 2024
Intro. by Meyer, Salvador, Murdock.

Status: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate (Senate action) (May 6 2024)

Bill History:

S 869

Bill Summaries:

  • Summary date: May 2 2024 - View Summary

    Enacts new Article 6H, Baby Bond Program Trust Fund, in GS Chapter 147, providing as follows. 

    Sets out the NCGA's policy and definitions that apply to the new Article. Defines eligible individual as an infant born on or after January 1, 2024, who: (1) is born to a parent who is a State resident or establishes residence in this State within six months of the infant's birth and (2) resides in a household with an annual household income that does not exceed 200% of the federal poverty level. Creates the Baby Bond Program Trust Fund (Fund) in the Department of State Treasurer, administered by the Baby Bond Program Trust Fund Board of Trustees (Board). Requires the Fund to be administered to (1) establish and fund individual accounts in the amount of $2,000 and (2) to enable contributors to save funds and increase the likelihood of the account holder's future financial success. Sets out requirements for setting up individual accounts for eligible individuals and for notifying parents of the account. Authorizes the Board to accept, hold, invest, and disburse contributions, and interest earned on such contributions, from contributors as trustees of the Fund. Requires the Board to hold all contributions to the Fund, and any earnings, in the Fund and invest the contributions. Prohibits distributing funds from an individual account before the account holder is 18 (or earlier if needed to pay for qualified tuition expenses only); sets out additional requirements for distributing funds from individual accounts, including that the holder be an NC resident. Sets out when an account is considered abandoned. Requires annual reports to account holders. Requires notifying the public about the Fund.

    Establishes the six-member Board for oversight of the general administration and proper operation of the Fund and to determine investment strategy for the Fund. Sets terms at three years and provides for the filling of vacancies. Sets out the Board's seven duties. Requires the Board to determine and document in an investment policy statement an appropriate investment strategy for the Fund containing one or more forms of investment or strategies for investment from which account owners may select. Requires authorizing the State Treasurer to be responsible for engaging and discharging investment managers and service providers, including contracting and contract monitoring, to implement the investment strategy established by the Board. Requires amounts in individual accounts to be invested according to the account owner's election of one or more of the Board-approved strategies. Sets out additional provisions governing forms of investment. Provides Board members immunity from civil liability for acts or failure act arising out of service on the Board, except in specified circumstances, including when the person derived an improper personal financial benefit. Requires the Board to report annually to the specified NCGA committee.

    Allows the Board to delegate authority to the State Treasurer to develop and perform all functions necessary and desirable to: (1) administer the Fund to meet and comply with the requirements of this act, (2) implement the investment strategy established by the Board, and (3) provide such other services as the State Treasurer deems necessary to facilitate participation in the Fund. Authorizes the State Treasurer to obtain the services of investment managers, investment advisors, service providers, or program managers as is necessary for the proper administration, marketing, and investment of the Fund. Allows the Treasurer to establish fees in amounts necessary to offset costs of the program and lists costs that may be paid from the Fund. Prohibits considering account distributions as income for any State benefits eligibility program that limits eligibility based on income.

    Requires the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to give information and assistance to the State Treasurer and enter into a data-sharing agreement with the State Treasurer to implement this act.

    Authorizes the State Treasurer and DHHS to adopt rules necessary to implement this act.

    Requires the State Treasurer to begin transferring one-time deposits and accepting contributions by February 15, 2025.

    Requires the Board to be organized immediately after a majority of the members have been qualified or appointed and have taken the oath of office. Sets the initial Board member terms to expire on June 30, 2027.

    Appropriates $10 million from the General Fund to the Department of State Treasurer for 2024-25 for purposes consistent with this act.