The Daily Bulletin: 2017-02-09

The Daily Bulletin: 2017-02-09

PUBLIC/HOUSE BILLS
H 76 (2017-2018) INCREASE FIRE & RESCUE PENSION BENEFIT. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO INCREASE THE MONTHLY BENEFITS FROM THE NORTH CAROLINA FIREFIGHTERS' AND RESCUE SQUAD WORKERS' PENSION FUND.

Amends GS 58-86-55 to increase the monthly pension amount paid to eligible firefighters and rescue squad workers and disabled members from the North Carolina Firefighters' and Rescue Squad Workers' Pension Fund (Fund) from $170 to $175. Makes conforming and technical changes to subsections (a), (b), (c), and (d2). Effective July 1, 2017, and applies to monthly benefits paid on or after that date.

Additionally, makes conforming changes to the amount paid from the Fund in GS 58-86-55(d1), effective July 1, 2018, to ensure that (d1) reflects changes made by this act when it is updated in 2018 due to changes made by SL 2016-108 (Retirement Amendments). 

Makes technical changes to SL 2016-108, Section 1(e), which sets out the effective dates of the changes made to GS 58-86-55.

Intro. by K. Hall, Clampitt, Hardister, Strickland.GS 58
H 78 (2017-2018) HB2 REPEAL/EQUALITY FOR ALL. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO PROTECT ALL NORTH CAROLINIANS AGAINST DISCRIMINATION IN ALL WALKS OF LIFE AND TO INCREASE THE PUNISHMENT FOR CERTAIN CRIMES THAT INVOLVE SEXUAL ASSAULTS.

* This summary has been updated to include Part VII, Education.

Part I. HB2 Repeal

Repeals SL 2016-3 (Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act, commonly known as House Bill 2) and SL 2016-99 (Restore State Claim for Wrongful Discharge, which amended House Bill 2).

Part II. Housing

Amends GS 41A-4, which delineates unlawful discriminatory housing practices, to refer to the protected status of another person as the basis for unlawful discrimination instead of listing specific protected classes (currently, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, handicapping condition, or familial status). Adds protected status to the defined terms in GS 41A-3 and defines the term to mean a person's race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Makes conforming changes to use a person's protected status language to replace specific classes of persons throughout GS 41A-4 and GS 41A-5 (concerning proof of a violation of GS 41A-4).

Amends GS 41A-6, which exempts from GS 41A-4 (except for subdivision (a)(6)) religious institutions and organizations operated by religions institutions or organizations that give preference to members of the same religion in a real estate transaction, so long as membership in that religion is not restricted by a protected status, other than religion (previously, specified race, color, sex, national origin, handicapping condition or familial status).

Part III. Employment

Amends GS 143-422.2 to establish that it is the public policy of the State to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all persons to seek, obtain and hold employment without discrimination or abridgment on account of race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, marital status, familial status, military or veteran status, or genetic information (previously, only protected race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex or handicap) by employers which regularly employ one or more employees (was, 15 or more employees).

Makes conforming changes to expand employment protections to those same classes added to GS 143-422.2 by this act, to GS 126.16 (Equal opportunity for employment and compensation by State departments and agencies and local political subdivisions) and GS 126-34.02(b) (concerning the appeal process for agency employment discrimination, harassment, and retaliation issues to be heard as contested cases).

Part IV. Public Accommodations

Enacts Article 49B to GS Chapter 143, Access to Public Accommodations, to be known as the Equal Access to Public Accommodations Act. Provides a legislative declaration that it is the public policy of the State to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all individuals within the State to enjoy fully and equally the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of places of public accommodation free of discrimination because of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, marital status, familial status, military or veteran status, or genetic information.

Establishes that it is not discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity for a public accommodation to provide separate bathrooms or changing facilities based on gender. Mandates places of accommodation to provide access to facilities based on a person's gender identity. Defines places of public accommodation to have the same meaning as defined in GS 168A-3(8), but excludes any private club or other establishment that is not in fact open to the public.

Authorizes the Human Relations Commission (Commission) in the Department of Administration to receive, investigate, and conciliate complaints of discrimination in public accommodations, and directs the Commission to effect an amicable resolution. Provides that in the event the Commission cannot effect an amicable resolution of the charges of discrimination, the complainant and the Commission can proceed with an enforcement action in accordance with GS 41A-7 (State Fair Housing Act enforcement provisions).

V. Credit

Enacts GS 75-43 to prohibit discrimination by any person engaged in any form of lending money in this State, or to residents of this State, in the extension of credit on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Allows complainants concerning violations of this statute to file a grievance with the Human Relations Commission. Directs the Commission to effect an amicable resolution, and in the event the Commission cannot effect an amicable resolution, the complainant and the Commission can proceed with an enforcement action in accordance with GS 41A-7, as similarly provided in GS 143-422.13 enacted by this act. Makes a violation of this statute an unfair trade practice in violation of GS 75-1.1.

Part VI. Insurance

Amends GS 58-3-25 to prohibit discriminatory practices by insurers because of an individual's race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, military or veteran status, or genetic information (previously, only protected race, color, national or ethnic origin).

Part VII. Education

Amends GS 115C-47 to require each local board of education to adopt a policy to establish that the local board of education and school personnel employed by the local board must not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Requires that the policy include that any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice may file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Amends GS 115C-218.45 to expand the basis on which a charter school must not limit admission to also include color, age, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information; removes creed and ancestry. Allows a charter school that serves only certain grade levels to limit admission based on age. 

Amends GS 115C-218.55 to prohibit a charter school from discriminating on the basis of national origin, race, color, religion, age, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, genetic information, or disability (was, only ethnicity, national origin, gender, or disability). Allows any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice to file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Repeals GS 115C-521.2 which required local boards of education to require every multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility that is designated for student use to be designated for and used only by students based on their biological sex.

Amends GS 115C-562.5 to prohibit a nonpublic school from discriminating on the basis of on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Allows any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice to file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Amends GS 115D-77 to expand upon the State Board of Community Colleges and local board of trustees nondiscrimination policy to also prohibit discrimination on the basis of color, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, and genetic information. Adds that the State Board and each board of trustees must give equal opportunity for employment and compensation of personnel at community colleges without regard to marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information, in addition to the already listed categories. 

Amends GS 116-11 to require the UNC Board of Governors to adopt a policy to provide that UNC and its affiliates and personnel employed by UNC and its affiliates must not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Requires that the policy include that any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice may file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Part VIII. Human Relations Commission

Amends GS 143B-391 by expanding the North Carolina Human Relations Commission’s duties to also include administering the provisions of  the new Equal Access to Public Accommodations Act; GS 143-422.3 (concerning investigating charges of discrimination received from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission); GS 143-422.13 (concerning investigating complaints of discrimination in public accommodations); GS 75-43 (concerning investigating discrimination by lenders); GS 115C-47(64) (concerning investigating discrimination by a local board of education or school personnel); GS 115C-218.55 (concerning investigating discrimination by a charter school); GS 115C-562.5 (concerning investigating discrimination by a nonpublic school); GS 115D-77 (concerning investigating discrimination by a community college); and GS 116-11 (concerning investigating discrimination by  the UNC system).

Part IX. Appropriation

Appropriates $788,076 in recurring funds from the General Fund to the Department of Administration, Human Relations Commission for 2017‑18. Requires that $545,407 from those funds be used for operating expenses, and $242,669 be used to fund four specified new positions. Effective July 1, 2017.

Part X. Increase Punishment for Certain Crimes that Involve Sexual Assaults

Enacts new GS 15A-1340.16E, which increases the punishment for specified crimes if the crime is committed in a changing facility that is designated for the opposite sex. A changing facility is defined as a facility designed or designated to be used by a person in various states of undress and that is open to the public or located in a place of public accommodation as defined in GS 168A-3(8); the term includes a restroom, locker room, changing room, or shower room. The minimum term of imprisonment is increased by 84 months, and the maximum term of imprisonment is the maximum term that corresponds to the minimum term after it is increased by 84 months when the felony is a violation of GS 14-27.21 (first degree forcible rape) or a violation of GS 14-27.26 (first degree forcible sexual offense). The minimum term of imprisonment is increased by 60 months and the maximum term of imprisonment is the maximum term that corresponds to the minimum term after it is increased by 60 months if the felony is a violation of GS 14-27.22 (second degree forcible rape) or a violation of GS 14-27.27 (second degree forcible sexual offense). The minimum term of imprisonment is increased by 36 months and the maximum term of imprisonment is the maximum term that corresponds to the minimum term after it is increased by 36 months if the felony is a violation of GS 14-202.1 (taking indecent liberties with children) or GS 14-202.4 (taking indecent liberties with a student). Sets out information that must be included in the indictment. Requires the State to prove the issue beyond a reasonable doubt during the same trial in which the defendant is tried for the felony. If the defendant pleads guilty or no contest to the felony but pleads not guilty to the issue above then a jury must be impaneled to determine that issue.

Amends GS 14-27.33 by making it a Class I felony to commit sexual battery while in a changing facility that is designated for the opposite sex. Makes conforming changes.

Part X is effective December 1, 2017. 

H 80 (2017-2018) BONA FIDE OWNERSHIP OF TIMBER PARCELS. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO PROTECT BONA FIDE OWNERS OF TIMBER FROM THE UNLAWFUL CUTTING OR REMOVAL OF TIMBER FROM THEIR LANDS.

Amends GS 1-539.1, concerning damages for the unlawful cutting, removal, or burning of timber, to provide that bona fide ownership must be established by mutual agreement of the owners of adjoining parcels prior to the cutting or removal of the wood, timber, shrubs, or trees. Requires the owner of the parcel seeking to cut or remove the wood, timber, shrubs, or trees to bear the cost of a boundary line survey to establish the location of the boundary line between the affected parcels if there is a dispute over the line or if the owners fail to reach mutual agreement.

Provides that any person, firm, or corporation that cuts or removes wood, timber, shrubs, or trees from the property of another and fails to prospectively establish bona fide ownership in accordance with this statute will be presumed to have acted with willfulness and knowledge, and will (1) be liable to the owner of said land for double the value of such wood, timber, shrubs, or trees injured, cut, or removed pursuant to subsection (a) of the statute and (2) be subject to GS 1-539.2B (Double damages for injury to agricultural commodities or production systems) and GS 14-135 (Cutting, injuring, or removing another's timber).

Effective January 1, 2018.

Intro. by Torbett.GS 1
H 81 (2017-2018) STI/REGIONAL & DIVISION WEIGHTING. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO ADJUST THE WEIGHTING ATTRIBUTED UNDER THE TRANSPORTATION INVESTMENT STRATEGY FORMULA TO THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION'S DIVISION ENGINEERS, THE METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS, AND THE RURAL TRANSPORTATION PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS, WHEN SELECTING REGIONAL IMPACT AND DIVISION NEED PROJECTS, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE HOUSE SELECT COMMITTEE ON STRATEGIC TRANSPORTATION PLANNING AND LONG TERM FUNDING SOLUTIONS.

Under current law, GS 136-189.11(d)(2)a requires 30% of the specified funds subject to the Transportation Investment Strategy to be used for Regional Impact Projects, and sets out criteria that must be used for selection of those Regional Impact Projects. This act changes the prioritization criteria used in selecting the Regional Impact Projects to require 10% to be based on the rankings identified by the Division Engineers, and 20% to be based on the rankings identified by the Metropolitan Planning Organizations and the Rural Transportation Organizations (previously, 30% was based on local input; the remaining 70% based on quantitative criteria is not changed). 

Similarly, current law, GS 136-89.11(d)(3)a, requires 30% of the specified funds subject to the Transportation Investment Strategy to be allocated in equal share to each of the Department of Transportation's divisions to be used for Division Need Projects. This act changes the criteria used for prioritizing the selection of Division Need Projects to require 15% to be based on the rankings identified by the Department's Division Engineers, 35% to be based on the rankings identified by the Metropolitan Planning Organizations and the Rural Transportation Planning Organizations (previously, 50% based on local input; the remaining 50% based on quantitative criteria is not changed). 

Makes technical changes to GS 136-189.11(d)(2)a, (3)a, and (4)b to refer to the Department's Division Engineers instead of the Department's Transportation Division Engineers.

Intro. by Torbett.GS 136
H 82 (2017-2018) EQUALITY FOR ALL/REPEAL HB2. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO PROTECT ALL NORTH CAROLINIANS AGAINST DISCRIMINATION IN ALL WALKS OF LIFE AND TO REPEAL HOUSE BILL 2, AS ENACTED DURING THE 2016 SECOND EXTRA SESSION OF THE 2015 GENERAL ASSEMBLY.

* This summary has been updated to include Part VII, Education.

Part I. HB2 Repeal

Repeals SL 2016-3 (Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act, commonly known as House Bill 2) and SL 2016-99 (Restore State Claim for Wrongful Discharge, which amended House Bill 2).

Part II. Housing

Amends GS 41A-4, which delineates unlawful discriminatory housing practices, to refer to the protected status of another person as the basis for unlawful discrimination instead of listing specific protected classes (currently, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, handicapping condition, or familial status). Adds protected status to the defined terms in GS 41A-3 and defines the term to mean a person's race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Makes conforming changes to use a person's protected status language to replace specific classes of persons throughout GS 41A-4 and GS 41A-5 (concerning proof of a violation of GS 41A-4).

Amends GS 41A-6, which exempts from GS 41A-4 (except for subdivision (a)(6)) religious institutions and organizations operated by religions institutions or organizations that give preference to members of the same religion in a real estate transaction, so long as membership in that religion is not restricted by a protected status, other than religion (previously, specified race, color, sex, national origin, handicapping condition or familial status).

Part III. Employment

Amends GS 143-422.2 to establish that it is the public policy of the State to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all persons to seek, obtain and hold employment without discrimination or abridgment on account of race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, marital status, familial status, military or veteran status, or genetic information (previously, only protected race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex or handicap) by employers which regularly employ one or more employees (was, 15 or more employees).

Makes conforming changes to expand employment protections to those same classes added to GS 143-422.2 by this act, to GS 126.16 (Equal opportunity for employment and compensation by State departments and agencies and local political subdivisions) and GS 126-34.02(b) (concerning the appeal process for agency employment discrimination, harassment, and retaliation issues to be heard as contested cases).

Part IV. Public Accommodations

Enacts Article 49B to GS Chapter 143, Access to Public Accommodations, to be known as the Equal Access to Public Accommodations Act. Provides a legislative declaration that it is the public policy of the State to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all individuals within the State to enjoy fully and equally the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of places of public accommodation free of discrimination because of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, marital status, familial status, military or veteran status, or genetic information.

Establishes that it is not discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity for a public accommodation to provide separate bathrooms or changing facilities based on gender. Mandates places of accommodation to provide access to facilities based on a person's gender identity. Defines places of public accommodation to have the same meaning as defined in GS 168A-3(8), but excludes any private club or other establishment that is not in fact open to the public.

Authorizes the Human Relations Commission (Commission) in the Department of Administration to receive, investigate, and conciliate complaints of discrimination in public accommodations, and directs the Commission to effect an amicable resolution. Provides that in the event the Commission cannot effect an amicable resolution of the charges of discrimination, the complainant and the Commission can proceed with an enforcement action in accordance with GS 41A-7 (State Fair Housing Act enforcement provisions).

V. Credit

Enacts GS 75-43 to prohibit discrimination by any person engaged in any form of lending money in this State, or to residents of this State, in the extension of credit on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Allows complainants concerning violations of this statute to file a grievance with the Human Relations Commission. Directs the Commission to effect an amicable resolution, and in the event the Commission cannot effect an amicable resolution, the complainant and the Commission can proceed with an enforcement action in accordance with GS 41A-7, as similarly provided in GS 143-422.13 enacted by this act. Makes a violation of this statute an unfair trade practice in violation of GS 75-1.1.

Part VI. Insurance

Amends GS 58-3-25 to prohibit discriminatory practices by insurers because of an individual's race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, military or veteran status, or genetic information (previously, only protected race, color, national or ethnic origin).

Part VII. Education

Amends GS 115C-47 to require each local board of education to adopt a policy to establish that the local board of education and school personnel employed by the local board must not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Requires that the policy include that any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice may file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Amends GS 115C-218.45 to expand the basis on which a charter school must not limit admission to also include color, age, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information; removes creed and ancestry. Allows a charter school that serves only certain grade levels to limit admission based on age. 

Amends GS 115C-218.55 to prohibit a charter school from discriminating on the basis of national origin, race, color, religion, age, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, genetic information, or disability (was, only ethnicity, national origin, gender, or disability). Allows any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice to file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Repeals GS 115C-521.2 which required local boards of education to require every multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility that is designated for student use to be designated for and used only by students based on their biological sex.

Amends GS 115C-562.5 to prohibit a nonpublic school from discriminating on the basis of on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Allows any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice to file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Amends GS 115D-77 to expand upon the State Board of Community Colleges and local board of trustees nondiscrimination policy to also prohibit discrimination on the basis of color, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, and genetic information. Adds that the State Board and each board of trustees must give equal opportunity for employment and compensation of personnel at community colleges without regard to marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information, in addition to the already listed categories. 

Amends GS 116-11 to require the UNC Board of Governors to adopt a policy to provide that UNC and its affiliates and personnel employed by UNC and its affiliates must not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, sex, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military or veteran status, or genetic information. Requires that the policy include that any person who claims to have been injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice or who reasonably believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by an unlawful discriminatory practice may file a complaint with the North Carolina Human Relations Commission. Requires the Commission to then work with the relevant parties to develop an amicable resolution to the charge of discrimination, and allows the complainant and the Commission to proceed with an enforcement action if the Commission is unable to effect an amicable resolution of the charges.

Part VIII. Human Relations Commission

Amends GS 143B-391 by expanding the North Carolina Human Relations Commission’s duties to also include administering the provisions of  the new Equal Access to Public Accommodations Act; GS 143-422.3 (concerning investigating charges of discrimination received from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission); GS 143-422.13 (concerning investigating complaints of discrimination in public accommodations); GS 75-43 (concerning investigating discrimination by lenders); GS 115C-47(64) (concerning investigating discrimination by a local board of education or school personnel); GS 115C-218.55 (concerning investigating discrimination by a charter school); GS 115C-562.5 (concerning investigating discrimination by a nonpublic school); GS 115D-77 (concerning investigating discrimination by a community college); and GS 116-11 (concerning investigating discrimination by  the UNC system).

Part IX. Appropriation

Appropriates $788,076 in recurring funds from the General Fund to the Department of Administration, Human Relations Commission for 2017‑18. Requires that $545,407 from those funds be used for operating expenses, and $242,669 be used to fund four specified new positions. Effective July 1, 2017.

Intro. by Harrison, Fisher, Butler.APPROP, GS 41, GS 58, GS 75, GS 115C, GS 115D, GS 116, GS 126, GS 143, GS 143B
H 83 (2017-2018) ENSURE BUDGET TRANSPARENCY. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO AMEND THE STATE BUDGET ACT TO REQUIRE THAT BUDGET SPECIAL PROVISIONS REFLECT THE NAME OF THE SPONSORING LEGISLATOR.

Enacts GS 143C-5-6 to Article 5 of GS Chapter 143C (Enactment of the State Budget) to mandate that every special provision contained in the Current Operations Appropriations Act indicate the name of the member(s) who requested that provision.

Intro. by Insko.GS 143C
H 84 (2017-2018) DL/DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING DESCRIPTION (New) Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO DIRECT THE DIVISION OF MOTOR VEHICLES TO DEVELOP A DESIGNATION FOR DRIVERS LICENSES THAT MAY BE GRANTED UPON REQUEST TO A PERSON WHO IS DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING.

Amends GS 20-7, concerning the issuance and renewal of driver's licenses, by adding a new subsection to direct the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to develop a designation for driver's licenses that may be granted upon request to state residents with a hearing impairment. Directs the DMV to consult with the Department of Public Safety and the State Highway Patrol in developing the hearing impaired designation for licenses. Requires an applicant requesting such designation to provide a letter from the applicant's primary care provider to the DMV that certifies the applicant has a hearing impairment. Clarifies that this new subsection does not authorize the issuance of a driver's license to a person ineligible under GS 20-9.

Intro. by Insko.GS 20
H 85 (2017-2018) FUNDS FOR EDUCATIONAL TRAINING CENTERS. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO APPROPRIATE FUNDS FOR REGIONAL PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR K-12 EDUCATORS.

Appropriates $2.4 million for each of the 2017-18 and 2018-19 fiscal years from the General Fund to the Department of Public Instruction for the purpose of providing a grant of $300,000 per year to each of the eight regional educational training centers. Directs the centers to provide quality professional development training for educators in the public schools. Names the eight centers as: Northeast Regional Educational Service Alliance, the Southeast Regional Educational Service Alliance, the Western Regional Educational Service Alliance, the Northwest Regional Educational Service Alliance, the Piedmont Triad Education Consortium, the Central Carolina Regional Educational Service Alliance, the Southwest Regional Educational Service Alliance, and the Sandhills Regional Educational Service Alliance. Effective July 1, 2018.

Intro. by Elmore, Lambeth.APPROP
H 86 (2017-2018) VIRTUAL CURRENCY CHANGES (NEW). Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO MAKE CLARIFYING CHANGES TO PERMISSIBLE INVESTMENTS AND STATUTORY TRUST UNDER THE MONEY TRANSMITTERS ACT.

Amends GS 53C-1-4(58) to define a public member as the term is used in GS Chapter 53C (Regulation of Banks) to mean a member of the State Banking Commission (Commission) who is not a practical banker, a consumer finance licensee, or a person licensed under Article 19B of GS Chapter 53 (was, who is not a practical banker or a consumer finance licensee), and who is not at the time of appointment to the Commission, nor within five years preceding, an employee of a North Carolina financial institution. Amends the 15-member Commission as set out in GS 53C-2-1(a) to reduce the number of public members the Governor is to appoint to the Commission from eight to seven, and direct the Governor to appoint one person licensed under Article 19B of GS Chapter 53 (The Secure and Fair Enforcement Mortgage Licensing Act).

Provides that when this act becomes effective, Donald E. Fader's position on the Commission is to convert to a position assigned for a licensee under Article 19B of GS Chapter 53. Directs Donald E. Fader to continue on the Commission as that designated licensee for his remaining term, scheduled to expire April 1, 2017, or until he resigns or ceases to meet the definition of a licensee under Article 19B of GS Chapter 53, whichever first occurs. Establishes that the terms of the remaining members appointed by the Governor are to expire under the current schedule, and directs the Governor to make appointments to fill vacancies on the Commission as they occur.

Intro. by Hardister, Jordan, K. Hall, Goodman.GS 53C

The Daily Bulletin: 2017-02-09

PUBLIC/SENATE BILLS
S 65 (2017-2018) BRIGHT FUTURES ACT. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT ENCOURAGING THE ESTABLISHMENT OF BRIGHT MARKETS BY ADDING THE DIGITAL INFRASTRUCTURE NECESSARY FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND INNOVATION IN KEY MARKETS, INCLUDING BROADBAND, RETAIL ONLINE SERVICES, INTERNET OF THINGS, GRIDPOWER, HEALTH CARE, AND TRAINING AND EDUCATION.

Identical to H 68, filed 2/8/17.

Includes several whereas clauses.

Currently, GS 143B-472.127 authorizes the Rural Economic Development Division to administer economic development grants or loans awarded by the Rural Infrastructure Authority, as provided in GS 143B-472.128, to local government units to be used in specified programs. The statute is amended to authorize funds from these grants or loans to also be used to construct the digital infrastructure needed to support broadband, computing, and communications components where these facilities will generate private job-creating investment. Exempts grants under this subdivision from the provisions of GS 143-355.4 (concerning local government water system efficiency requirements).

Amends GS 143-128.1C(a) to expand the definition of a public-private project in the context of construction to mean a capital improvement project undertaken for the benefit of a governmental entity and a private developer pursuant to a development contract that includes construction of a public facility or other improvements that also include digital infrastructure to support broadband, computing, and communications components.

Adds to the powers and duties of the North Carolina Board of Science, Technology, and Innovation (Board) as follows. Directs the Board to annually report on the impact that technology and innovation in the BRIGHT markets is having on economic growth and development in the State, including recommendations for increasing that impact, to the Governor, the chairs of the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee on Agriculture and Natural and Economic Resources, the Fiscal Research Division, the Secretary of Commerce, and any nonprofit with which the Department of Commerce contracts under GS 143B-431.01. Defines BRIGHT markets to mean broadband, retail online services, the internet of things, the power grid, health care, and training and education market segments. Specifies what the Board's annual report must include.

Amends GS 115D-5.1 to require the State Board of Community Colleges to include in its annual report to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee an assessment of how the Customized Training Program (created by the statute) has been used to support companies in BRIGHT Market segments, including recommendations on how efforts can be expanded or aligned with nondegree certification programs to increase employment in jobs in the NCWorks Online system.

Amends GS 143B-438.14, which establishes the "No Adult Left Behind" Initiative, to add a new subsection to direct the NCWorks Commission (Commission) to submit an annual report regarding BRIGHT Market segments to the Governor and Chairs of the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee on Agriculture and Natural and Economic Resources, the Chairs of the Senate Appropriations Committee on Natural and Economic Resources, and the Fiscal Research Division. Specifies what the Commission's annual report must include.

Amends SL 2016-94, Section 15.1, to require the Department of Commerce to supplement the report submitted pursuant to subsection (b) of the statute with three additional evaluations and recommendations relating to BRIGHT Market segments, as specified. Defines BRIGHT Market and digital infrastructure.

Intro. by Meredith.GS 115D, GS 143, GS 143B
S 66 (2017-2018) REQUIRE SAFETY HELMETS/UNDER 21. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO REVISE THE MOTOR VEHICLE LAWS TO PROVIDE CERTAIN EXCEPTIONS TO THE REQUIREMENT THAT ALL OPERATORS AND PASSENGERS ON MOTORCYCLES OR MOPEDS WEAR A SAFETY HELMET AND TO REMOVE THE ASSESSMENT OF COURT COSTS FROM THE PENALTIES APPLIED TO PERSONS FOUND GUILTY OF A HELMET USE INFRACTION.

Amends GS 20-140.4 to allow a person 21 years of age or older to operate a motorcycle without wearing a safety helmet if (1) the operator has held a motorcycle license or motorcycle endorsement for more than 12 months or (2) the operator has successfully completed the course of instruction offered by the Motorcycle Safety Instruction Program or its equivalent. Prohibits a person from operating a motorcycle without wearing a safety helmet unless the operator is covered by an insurance policy providing for at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred as a result of a crash while operating or riding on a motorcycle. Allows a person 21 years of age or older to ride as a motorcycle passenger without wearing a safety helmet if the operator is allowed to operate a motorcycle without a helmet, under conditions described above, and the person is covered by an insurance policy providing for at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred as a result of a crash while riding on a motorcycle. Violations of GS 20-140.4 require payment of a $25.50 penalty and are not assessed any court costs (was, payment of $25.50 plus three specified court costs).

Effective for violations occurring on or after October 1, 2017. 

Intro. by Meredith.GS 20
S 68 (2017-2018) BIPARTISAN BD OF ELECTIONS AND ETHICS ENFORCE (NEW). Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO REPEAL G.S. 126-5(D)(2C), AS ENACTED BY S.L. 2016-126; TO REPEAL PART I OF S.L. 2016-125; AND TO CONSOLIDATE THE FUNCTIONS OF ELECTIONS, CAMPAIGN FINANCE, LOBBYING, AND ETHICS UNDER ONE QUASI JUDICIAL AND REGULATORY AGENCY BY CREATING THE NORTH CAROLINA BIPARTISAN STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS AND ETHICS ENFORCEMENT.

Includes several whereas clauses.

Enacts GS 115C-382.5 to encourage local boards of education to adopt a student attendance recognition program within the local school administrative unit. Provides that, if a local board of education adopts a student attendance recognition program, a student with an absence resulting from service as a legislative page or a governor's page are eligible for participation in the program, and the absence cannot be included as part of the student's record of attendance for purposes of this program.

Applies beginning with the 2017-18 school year.

Intro. by D. Davis, Barefoot.GS 115C
S 69 (2017-2018) LOCAL GOV'T COMM/FINANCE OFFICER TRAINING. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT PROVIDING THAT THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMMISSION SHALL NOTIFY A FINANCE OFFICER OR OTHER EMPLOYEE WHO PERFORMS THE DUTIES OF A FINANCE OFFICER WHEN HE OR SHE IS REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE IN TRAINING RELATED TO THE POWERS, DUTIES, AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FINANCE OFFICER AND REQUIRING THE EMPLOYING LOCAL GOVERNMENT OR PUBLIC AUTHORITY TO NOTIFY THE COMMISSION WHEN THE FINANCE OFFICER OR OTHER EMPLOYEE HAS COMPLETED THE REQUIRED TRAINING.

Amends GS 159-35(d), which authorizes the Local Government Commission (Commission) to require any finance officer or any employee performing the duties of a finance officer to participate in training related to the powers, duties, and responsibilities of the finance officer. This act directs the Commission to notify the finance officer or other employee and the employing local government or public authority when the Commission requires a finance officer or other employee to participate in training. Requires the employing local government or public authority to submit proof to the Commission in writing that the training requirements have been satisfied.

Effective June 30, 2017.

Intro. by D. Davis, Tarte.GS 159
S 70 (2017-2018) RLSC STUDY SALES TAX EXEMPTION: NONPROFITS. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO REQUIRE THE REVENUE LAWS STUDY COMMITTEE TO STUDY THE EFFECTS OF CREATING A SALES TAX EXEMPTION FOR NONPROFIT CORPORATIONS.

Requires the Revenue Laws Study Committee (Committee) to study replacing the requirement for tax‑exempt nonprofit corporations to pay and seek a refund for the sales tax with a sales tax exemption. Requires the study to include any negative effects on county budgets resulting from the inclusion of local sales tax revenues that must be refunded to nonprofit corporations. Requires the Committee to report its findings, together with any recommended legislation, to the 2018 Regular Session of the 2017 General Assembly upon its convening.

Intro. by D. Davis, Pate.STUDY

The Daily Bulletin: 2017-02-09

LOCAL/HOUSE BILLS
H 77 (2017-2018) SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEX./JOHNSTON COUNTY. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO PROVIDE ADDITIONAL FLEXIBILITY TO JOHNSTON COUNTY SCHOOLS IN ADOPTING THE SCHOOL CALENDAR.

Under current law, GS 115C-84.2(d) sets the parameters within which local boards of education must determine the opening and closing dates of public schools under subdivision (a)(1) of this statute. Amends GS 115C-84.2(d) to provide the specified local board of education with additional flexibility in adopting its school calendar. Limits application of this provision to Johnston County Schools. Applies beginning with the 2017-18 school year. 

Intro. by Strickland, White, Brisson.Johnston
H 79 (2017-2018) SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEX./GASTON COUNTY SCHOOLS. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT TO PROVIDE ADDITIONAL FLEXIBILITY TO THE GASTON COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION IN ADOPTING THE SCHOOL CALENDAR.

Under current law, GS 115C-84.2(d) sets the parameters within which local boards of education must determine the opening and closing dates of public schools under subdivision (a)(1) of this statute. Amends GS 115C-84.2(d) to provide the specified local board of education with additional flexibility in adopting its school calendar. Limits application of this provision to Gaston County Schools. Applies beginning with the 2017-18 school year.

Intro. by Torbett.Gaston

The Daily Bulletin: 2017-02-09

LOCAL/SENATE BILLS
S 67 (2017-2018) 48TH SENATORIAL DISTRICT LOCAL ACT-1. Filed Feb 9 2017, AN ACT RELATING TO THE 48TH SENATORIAL DISTRICT.

Blank bill.

Intro. by Edwards.Buncombe, Henderson, Transylvania
ACTIONS ON BILLS
NOTES 1. Digests appearing under “Summaries of Bills Filed” are for bills stamped with today’s filing date.
  2. Amendments and committee substitutes adopted today are summarized following the chamber action.
  3. Subscribers can find the digest of every version of each bill online at lrs.sog.unc.edu.
  4. The dates on which previous amendments or committee substitutes were adopted are listed below bill numbers.
  5. The action "Cal Pursuant Rule 36b" indicates that the bill has been reported by committee and is awaiting calendaring.
  6. Enacted bills are indicated by #, failed bills by *. Actions that change a bill are indicated by HA or SA.

Actions on Bills: 2017-02-09

PUBLIC BILLS

H 7: LRC/STRENGTHEN SAVINGS RESERVE.

    House: Reptd Fav
    House: Cal Pursuant Rule 36(b)
    House: Placed On Cal For 02/14/2017

H 39: AMEND APPOINTMENTS/UNC BD OF GOVERNORS.

    House: Regular Message Sent To Senate
    Senate: Regular Message Received From House
    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

H 59: REVENUE LAWS TECHNICAL CHANGES.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On Finance

H 61: SMALL BUSINESS INCOME TAX RELIEF.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On Finance

H 62: WOMAN'S RIGHT TO KNOW ADDITION/ASHLEY'S LAW.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Health, if favorable, Judiciary IV

H 63: CITIZENS PROTECTION ACT OF 2017.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Judiciary II, if favorable, Appropriations

H 64: MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS IN EVEN-NUMBERED YEARS.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on State and Local Government II, if favorable, Elections and Ethics Law

H 65: REQ ACTIVE TIME FELONY DEATH MV/BOAT.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On Judiciary II

H 66: VETERANS PLATES/VEHICLE WEIGHT RESTRICTION.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Transportation, if favorable, Finance

H 67: INCREASE SMALL BREWERY LIMITS.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Alcoholic Beverage Control, if favorable, Commerce and Job Development, if favorable, Finance

H 68: BRIGHT FUTURES ACT.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Energy and Public Utilities, if favorable, Commerce and Job Development

H 69: CONSTITUTIONAL CARRY ACT.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Judiciary I, if favorable, Finance

H 70: SOG PILOT PROJECT STANDARDS/PED.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On State and Local Government II

H 71: LEGISLATOR SUBSISTENCE/TRAVEL RATES - PED.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On Appropriations

H 72: SCHOOL BUS CAMERAS/CIVIL PENALTIES.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Judiciary I, if favorable, Education - K-12, if favorable, Finance

H 73: PROHIBIT DRIVING WITH ANIMAL IN LAP.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref to the Com on Judiciary II, if favorable, Transportation

H 74: ADOPT BOBCAT AS STATE CAT.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On Wildlife Resources

H 76: INCREASE FIRE & RESCUE PENSION BENEFIT.

    House: Filed

H 78: HB2 REPEAL/EQUALITY FOR ALL.

    House: Filed

H 80: BONA FIDE OWNERSHIP OF TIMBER PARCELS.

    House: Filed

H 81: STI/REGIONAL & DIVISION WEIGHTING.

    House: Filed

H 82: EQUALITY FOR ALL/REPEAL HB2.

    House: Filed

H 83: ENSURE BUDGET TRANSPARENCY.

    House: Filed

H 84: DL/DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING DESCRIPTION (New)

    House: Filed
    House: Filed

H 85: FUNDS FOR EDUCATIONAL TRAINING CENTERS.

    House: Filed

H 86: VIRTUAL CURRENCY CHANGES (NEW).

    House: Filed
    House: Filed

S 29: ALJ REVIEW OF DPS CIVIL PENALTIES.

    Senate: Withdrawn From Com
    Senate: Re-ref Com On Judiciary
    Senate: Sequential Referral To Rules and Operations of the Senate Added

S 39: CHARTER SCHOOLS/CIHSS.

    Senate: Withdrawn From Com
    Senate: Re-ref to Education/Higher Education. If fav, re-ref to Finance. If fav, re-ref to Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 42: REDUCE COST & REG. BURDEN/HOSP. CONSTRUCTION.

    Senate: Withdrawn From Com
    Senate: Re-ref to Health Care. If fav, re-ref to Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 48: CLINICAL EDUCATORS FOR STUDENT TEACHING.

    Senate: Withdrawn From Com
    Senate: Re-ref to Education/Higher Education. If fav, re-ref to Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 53: LAW ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITY/CUSTODY OF CHILD.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 55: SCHOOL BUS CAMERAS/CIVIL PENALTIES.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 57: PURCHASE PISTOL PERMIT/RETIRED VETERAN ID.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 60: RECORD OF EXCUSALS FROM JURY DUTY.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 61: LTD. LICENSE/DRIVING TO SCHOOL PAST 9:00.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 62: VETERANS' AFFAIRS COMMISSION/STRATEGIC PLAN.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 63: MILITARY AFFAIRS COMMISSION/STRATEGIC PLAN.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 64: VETERANS' HISTORY AWARENESS MONTH.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 65: BRIGHT FUTURES ACT.

    Senate: Filed

S 66: REQUIRE SAFETY HELMETS/UNDER 21.

    Senate: Filed

S 68: BIPARTISAN BD OF ELECTIONS AND ETHICS ENFORCE (NEW).

    Senate: Filed
    Senate: Filed

S 69: LOCAL GOV'T COMM/FINANCE OFFICER TRAINING.

    Senate: Filed

S 70: RLSC STUDY SALES TAX EXEMPTION: NONPROFITS.

    Senate: Filed

Actions on Bills: 2017-02-09

LOCAL BILLS

H 58: CHARLOTTE FIREFIGHTERS' RETIREMENT SYSTEM.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On State and Local Government I

H 60: SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEX./CERTAIN SCHOOL SYSTEMS.

    House: Passed 1st Reading
    House: Ref To Com On Education - K-12

H 77: SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEX./JOHNSTON COUNTY.

    House: Filed

H 79: SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEX./GASTON COUNTY SCHOOLS.

    House: Filed

S 37: ROANOKE ISLAND FIRE DISTRICT CHANGES.

    Senate: Withdrawn From Com
    Senate: Re-ref to State and Local Government. If fav, re-ref to Finance. If fav, re-ref to Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 51: WINSTON-SALEM/SERVICE BY PUBLICATION COST.

    Senate: Withdrawn From Com
    Senate: Re-ref to State and Local Government. If fav, re-ref to Finance. If fav, re-ref to Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 54: CHARLOTTE FIREFIGHTERS' RETIREMENT SYSTEM.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 56: SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEXIBILITY/CERTAIN SYSTEMS.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 58: 45TH SENATORIAL DISTRICT LOCAL ACT-1.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 59: 31ST SENATORIAL DISTRICT LOCAL ACT-1.

    Senate: Passed 1st Reading
    Senate: Ref To Com On Rules and Operations of the Senate

S 67: 48TH SENATORIAL DISTRICT LOCAL ACT-1.

    Senate: Filed

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