HOTEL OPERATION AND PERSONNEL EDUCATION ACT.

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View NCGA Bill Details2023-2024 Session
House Bill 971 (Public) Filed Wednesday, May 1, 2024
AN ACT DIRECTING THE DEPARTMENT OF LABOR TO DEVELOP HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS TRAINING, REQUIRING LODGING ESTABLISHMENTS, ACCOMMODATION FACILITATORS, AND PROPERTY MANAGERS FOR VACATION RENTALS TO IMPLEMENT HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS TRAINING, AND INCREASING THE PUNISHMENT FOR A FIRST OFFENSE OF SOLICITING A PROSTITUTE.
Intro. by Crutchfield, Reeder, Arp, Sasser.

Status: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate (Senate action) (Jun 13 2024)

SOG comments (2):

Long title change

House committee substitute to the 1st edition changed the long title. Original title was AN ACT DIRECTING THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TO DEVELOP HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS TRAINING, REQUIRING LODGING ESTABLISHMENTS AND ACCOMMODATION FACILITATORS TO IMPLEMENT HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS TRAINING, AND INCREASING THE PUNISHMENT FOR A FIRST OFFENSE OF SOLICITING A PROSTITUTE.

Long title change

Committee substitute to the 2nd edition changed the long title. Previous long title was AN ACT DIRECTING THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TO DEVELOP HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS TRAINING, REQUIRING LODGING ESTABLISHMENTS, ACCOMMODATION FACILITATORS, AND LANDLORDS OR REAL ESTATE BROKERS FOR VACATION RENTALS TO IMPLEMENT HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS TRAINING, AND INCREASING THE PUNISHMENT FOR A FIRST OFFENSE OF SOLICITING A PROSTITUTE.

H 971

Bill Summaries:

  • Summary date: Jun 12 2024 - View Summary

    House committee substitute to the 2nd edition makes the following changes.

    Amends proposed GS 130A-511, concerning the required human trafficking awareness training, as follows. Adds the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to the list of agencies that the Department of Labor (DOL) must consult with in developing the training.  Expands the formats in which the training is accessible to include in-person and classroom settings (currently, just electronic).  Requires that employees and third-party contractors performing housekeeping services of lodging establishments beginning employment on or after January 1, 2025, complete the training within 60 days of first providing services to the lodging establishment.  Narrows the persons subject to any penalty for willful and knowing violations of GS 130A-511 to lodging establishments and third-party contractors. 

    Adds defined term property manager (a landlord as defined in GS 42A-4 or real estate broker as defined in GS 93A-2 that has primary responsibility for the listing, supervision, or maintenance of a vacation rental; does not include a landlord that delegates all listing, supervisory, and maintenance responsibilities to a real estate broker) to GS 42A-39 (human trafficking awareness reporting and training requirements) and removes terms landlord and real estate broker. Now directs that the property manager implement a procedure for reporting suspected human trafficking (was, landlord). Removes requirement that any real estate broker or employees performing housekeeping or check-in/check-out services for the vacation rental take the human trafficking awareness training. Adds 60-day deadline from date of first providing services to the vacation rental for employees of the property manager hired on or after January 1, 2025, to complete the training. Specifies that the type of vacation rental which triggers the initial training deadline of December 31, 2026, are those rentals initially offered for lease prior to January 1, 2025 (was, rentals offered for lease prior to January 1, 2025). Changes the reporting entity for rentals listed through an accommodation facilitator to DOL (was, DHHS). Requires accommodation facilitators to submit a certification of compliance with their report to DOL (was, requirement to verify compliance). Narrows the persons subject to any penalty for willful and knowing violations of GS 42A-39 to property managers and third-party contractors. Makes it an unfair trade practice for a property manager to intentionally make a material misstatement in an acknowledgment of human trafficking awareness completion. 

    Changes the entity responsible for developing or identifying a human trafficking awareness training program that complies with the act from DHHS to DOL.

    Decreases the appropriation from the General Fund to the Administrative Office of the Courts from $500,000 to $450,000 in nonrecurring funds for the 2024-25 fiscal year. Appropriates $50,000 for 2024-25 from the General Fund to DOL to develop or identify the required training and to administer this act. 

    Makes conforming changes.    

    Changes the act’s long title.  


  • Summary date: May 22 2024 - View Summary

    House committee substitute to the 1st edition makes the following changes.

    Amends proposed GS 130A-511, concerning the required human trafficking awareness training, as follows. Requires that the training be available electronically for free to those individuals who are required to complete the training, but that it not be readily accessible to the public (was, must be accessible on the Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) website to individuals with login credentials). Expands upon those who the lodging establishment must ensure receive the training, to include employees who provide food or beverage services. Adds the requirement that a third-party contractor, as defined, ensure that their employees who perform housekeeping services at the lodging establishment, provide food or beverage services on site at the lodging establishment, or provide check-in and check-out services at the lodging establishment receive human trafficking awareness training. Requires that employees beginning employment on or after January 1, 2025, complete the training before performing any of their duties, and every two years thereafter; those employed before that date must complete the training by December 31, 2026, and every two years thereafter.

    Amends proposed GS 42A-39, concerning human trafficking awareness reporting and training requirements for accommodation facilitators, by expanding upon those who fall under the statute to also include landlords, real estate brokers, and third-party contractors, and amend the statute to now provide as follows. Adds definitions for vacation rental, employee, landlord, real estate broker, and third-party contractor. Requires a landlord, before initially listing a vacation rental, either directly by the landlord, through a real estate broker, or through an accommodation facilitation, to implement a procedure for reporting suspected human trafficking occurring at vacation rentals to the specified hotline or to a local law enforcement agency. Requires the following to complete human trafficking awareness training, for any vacation rental offered for lease: (1) the landlord, or if the landlord is a partnership, corporation, sole proprietorship, or limited liability company, the employee or third-party contractor who oversees the supervision or maintenance of the vacation rental on the landlord’s behalf; (2) the landlord's employees who perform housekeeping services at the vacation rental or provide check-in and check-out services for the vacation rental; (3) any third-party contractor or employee of a third-party contractor who performs housekeeping services at the vacation rental or provides check-in and check-out services for the vacation rental; and (4) any real estate broker and any employee of the real estate broker that performs housekeeping services at the vacation rental or provides check-in and check-out services for the vacation rental. Requires training to be completed every two years and sets out deadlines for initial completion depending on the date the vacation rental is offered for lease. Requires an accommodation facilitator to do the following, if the vacation rental is listed through an accommodation facilitator: (1) notify the landlord or any real estate broker providing the listing of the training requirements; (2) certify that training has been completed by the specified dates, depending on when the vacation rental was initially listed with the accommodation facilitator; and (3) report annually to the Department of Health and Human Services starting January 1, 2026, on the methods used to notify landlords and real estate brokers of the requirements of this statute, and to verify compliance with those requirements by landlords and real estate brokers using their services. Allows penalties for violations of this statute in the amount of $500 for the first violation, $1,000 for a second violation, and $2,000 for the third and subsequent violations; penalty proceeds are to be remitted to the Civil Penalty and Forfeiture Fund. Makes it an unfair trade practice for a vacation rental provider to intentionally make a material misstatement in an acknowledgement of human trafficking awareness training completion. Specifies that this statute does not: (1) create a private cause of action against an accommodation facilitator, or its employees, for any act or omission arising out of the requirements of this section or (2) limit or impair the rights or remedies otherwise available to a victim of human trafficking under any other law.

    Requires DHHS to develop or identify a human trafficking awareness training program that complies with this act and make the training available electronically by January 1, 2025.

    Further amends GS 14-205.41 to specify that the penalties for soliciting another person for the purpose of prostitution does not apply to the person engaging in prostitution.

    Amends the allowable uses of the $500,000 appropriated to the Administrative Office of the Courts to also include an awareness campaign and other efforts to raise awareness on this act’s provisions.

    Pushes back the effective date of new GS 130A-511 and GS 42A-39 from October 1, 2024, to January 1, 2025.

    Amends the act's long title. 


  • Summary date: May 1 2024 - View Summary

    Enacts Article 24, GS Chapter 130A, titled Human Trafficking Public Awareness in Lodging Establishments. Includes defined terms which incorporate existing GS Chapter 130A definitions for "employee", "employer", and "lodging establishment". Directs the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to develop a training course to inform and educate individuals about human trafficking in consultation with the NC Human Trafficking Commission (Commission). Requires DHHS to ensure the training is accessible on its website to individuals with login credentials provided by DHHS. Permits DHHS to identify existing courses. Requires lodging establishments to ensure employees with housekeeping or check-in and check-out responsibilities receive annual human trafficking awareness training developed or identified by DHHS; implement a reporting procedure for suspected human trafficking; and prominently display signs that contain the National Human Trafficking Resource hotline information in consultation with the NC Restaurant and Lodging Association. Makes willful and knowing violations subject to a $500 penalty for the first violation, $1,000 for a second violation, and $2,000 for subsequent violations. Specifies that the Article does not create a private cause of action or limit or impair other rights and available remedies under law.

    Enacts GS 42A-39, establishing conditions that must be met for accommodation facilitators, defined by incorporating the definition for the term set forth in GS Chapter 105, to contract with a landlord or real estate broker offering a vacation rental for lease. Directs that facilitators (1) require vacation rental providers acknowledge completion of human trafficking awareness training developed or identified by DHHS (applicable to lodging establishments under new Article 24, GS Chapter 130A) within the last year and (2) implement a reporting procedure for suspected human trafficking occurring at vacation rentals. Makes failure of accommodation facilitators to satisfy either requirement, or the intentional material misstatement of a vacation rental provider in an acknowledgement of training, an unfair trade practice in violation of GS 75-1.1. Specifies that the statute does not create a private cause of action or limit or impair other rights and available remedies under law.

    Makes the above changes applicable to activities occurring on or after October 1, 2024.

    Amends GS 14-205.1 to make solicitation of another for the purpose of prostitution a Class I felony (currently, a Class 1 misdemeanor). Applies to offenses committed on or after December 1, 2024.

    Appropriates $500,000 in nonrecurring funds from the General Fund to the Administrative Office of the Courts for 2024-25 to further the work of the Commission. Effective July 1, 2024.