AN ACT, CONSISTENT WITH HOUSE BILL 966 OF THE 2019 REGULAR SESSION, TO ENACT A BUDGET FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, TO MAKE ADDITIONAL APPROPRIATIONS, TRANSFERS, AND REDUCTIONS TO THE DEPARTMENT, AND TO MAKE OTHER MODIFICATIONS RELATED TO THE OPERATIONS OF THE DEPARTMENT.
Senate committee substitute deletes the provisions of the 1st edition and now provides the following.
States that the act's appropriations are for maximum amounts necessary for services and purposes of the Department of Transportation (DOT) pursuant to the State Budget Act. Requires any savings to revert to the appropriate fund at the end of each fiscal year, except as otherwise provided by law.
Deems state funds appropriated for each year of the 2019-21 fiscal biennium up to the specified amounts for all DOT budget codes listed in the Governor's Recommended Budget and the identified Budget Support Document, as adjusted in this act, and departmental receipts up to the amounts needed to implement the legislatively mandated salary increases and employee benefit increases provided in the act for each year of the fiscal biennium. Provides for overrealized receipts. Restricts expenditures to those legislatively authorized.
Authorizes DOT to spend, subject to the Director of the Budget's approval, grants awarded subsequent to the act that (1) are less than $2.5 million, (2) do not require State matching funds, and (3) will not be used for a capital project. Requires DPT to report receipt of these funds to the specified NCGA committee within 30 days of receipt. Directs the Office of State Budget and Management (OSBM) to work with DOT to budget grant awards as specified, including employing additional time-limited State personnel. Explicitly prohibits DOT from accepting a grant not anticipated by the act if acceptance would obligate the State to make future expenditures.
Establishes that DOT is not required to consult with the specified NCGA committee prior to establishing or increasing a fee as authorized by the act. Additionally, authorizes DOT to adopt emergency rules to establish or increase a fee as authorized by the act if adoption of a rule would be otherwise required under GS Chapter 150B (APA).
Sets forth schedules for appropriations from the State Highway Fund and the State Highway Trust Fund for the fiscal biennium and provides the Highway Fund and Highway Trust Fund availability used in developing the fiscal biennium budget.
Allocates $198,491,809 and $292,988,957 for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 fiscal years of the funds appropriated to DOT from the Highway Fund in specified amounts for specified purposes, including allocations for the general maintenance, road and highway improvements, the new lease for DOT headquarters and relocation expenses, and department-wide compensation increases and employee benefit increases.
Reduces $46,565,704 and $41,288,202 for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 fiscal years of the funds appropriated to DOT from the Highway Fund in specified amounts from specified purposes, including the Bridge Program and Bridge Preservation Program.
Provides that if Section 41.8 of HB 966 (Appropriations Act of 2019) or substantially similar legislation becomes law, $5.4 million in recurring funds for the 2020-21 fiscal year is reduced from the aviation program.
Requires DOT and OSBM to adjust and certify the 2019-21 biennial budget to remove $4,111,995,220 in requirements and $4,111,995,220 in receipts that are double-budgeted in the DOT budget.
Allocates $49,462,437 and $166,336,452 for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 fiscal years of the funds appropriated to DOT from the Highway Trust Fund in specified amounts for specified purposes, including debt service payments and the Strategic Transportation Initiatives Program.
Repeals Section 34.1(b) and (c), regarding anticipated revenues of the Highway Fund and the Highway Trust Fund, of SL 2018-5 (Appropriations Act of 2018).
Authorizes and certifies specified anticipated revenues for the Highway Fund and the Highway Trust Fund for 2021-22 through 2024-25 fiscal years. Directs DOT and OSBM to develop a four-year revenue forecast beginning with the 2025-26 fiscal year to be used to develop cash flow estimates, develop the Strategic Transportation Improvement Program, and compute transportation debt capacity.
Allocates the funds appropriated from the Highway Fund for capital, repairs, and renovations in specified amounts for specified purposes.
Directs that funds appropriated to the DOT, Construction - Contingency Fund for the 2019-20 fiscal year are to be allocated statewide for highway improvements and related transportation enhancements, subject to prior approval by the Secretary of Transportation. Requires unexpended funds to remain available until expended.
Amends GS 124-5.1 to no longer require dividends of the NC Railroad Company to be deposited into the Freight Rail & Rail Crossing Safety Improvement Fund within the Highway Fund. Repeals GS 124-18, which requires State-owned railroad companies to issue dividends.
Requires DOT to submit a report to the specified NCGA committee and division by March 15, 2020, on the issues specified regarding governance of the Metropolitan Planning Organizations and Rural Transportation Planning Organizations.
Allocates the funds appropriated to DOT for general airport improvements in specified amounts for specified purposes. Authorizes recipient airports to use the funds allocated to funds improvement to the airport and pay debt service or related financing costs and expenses on revenues bonds or notes issued by the airport, subject to DOT approval of the airport's report outlining its proposed use of the funds, as specified. Details further limitations and parameters regarding the use of the funds. Requires DOT to report on the use of funds by each airport to the specified NCGA committee and division by March 15, 2020.
Provides for budgeting of the legislative salary increases for DOT employees and requires DOT to report to the specified NCGA committee amounts allocated to each division or unit within 30 days after an allocation.
Directs DOT to purchase the property described as the Ellerbe Rest Area with funds appropriated, and to maintain the property, erect signage, and make related updates to its publications and website.
Authorizes DOT to reclassify nine vacant positions as specified.
Directs DOT to designate two described bridges as the Lance Corporal Nicholas S. O'Brian, U.S.M.C. Bridge, and the Corporal J. Ralph Holder Bridge, as provided.
Enacts Article 14C, Mobility/Modernization Fund, to GS Chapter 136. Mandates that 40% of the funds appropriated to the Mobility/Modernization Fund in the Highway Fund be used for a Spot Mobility Program, managed by the DOT State Traffic Engineer, to provide funding for small projects that will reduce traffic congestion and vehicular delay times. Directs DOT to develop a formula for selecting projects to receive funding, including four specified considerations. Requires priority be given for projects that will improve access from the State highway system to school, as defined. Mandates that 12% of the funds appropriated to the Mobility/Modernization Fund be used for (1) improvements and infrastructure that expedite economic development; (2) small construction projects, as provided; and (3) the development and expansion of access roads to industrial facilities. Mandates that 48% of the funds appropriated to the Mobility/Modernization Fund be used for construction projects that are high impact and low cost, including intersection improvement projects, minor widening projects, and operational improvement projects. Directs DOT to develop a formula for selecting projects to receive funding, including five specified considerations. Requires DOT to submit an annual report, beginning March 1, 2020, to the specified NCGA committee and division regarding the types of projects funded and the total funding allocated per project under new Article 14C. Makes conforming changes to repeal Sections 34.7(a) through (d) of SL 2017-57 (Appropriations Act of 2017), which contains similar provisions regarding the Mobility/Modernization Fund.
Directs the OSBM and the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to adjust the Hearings Unit's certified budget for the 2019-20 fiscal year to align total requirements and receipts to reflect the requirements set forth in Section 34.9 of SL 2014-100, as amended, that all hearing administration must be fully receipt-supported from the fee proceeds collected by the Hearings Unit. Mandates this adjustment be completed by January 1, 2020.
Requires the DMV to report on any organizational changes occurring October 1, 2018, through October 1, 2019, to the specified NCGA committees and division by January 1, 2020. Details required content of the report.
Directs DOT to expand its performance dashboard available on its website to track nine data identified data points about the DMV, including the number of conventional hybrid vehicle, plug-in hybrid vehicle, and plug-in electric vehicle new registrations issued per month and year-to-date. Sets forth related defined terms. Requires DOT to complete the dashboard expansion by January 1, 2020.
Amends GS 20-79.4 to reduce the number of years required for a vehicle to qualify for an antique registration plate from 35 years to 30 years.
Directs the Department of Administration (DOA) to review the inventory of State-owned office space in the City of Raleigh for purposes of relocating the State License Plate Agency located on New Bern Avenue. Directs DOT to issue an RFP within 30 days of January 1, 2020, if unable to locate suitable office space, within the geographic scope of the RFP being the City of Raleigh. Requires DOT to report to the specified NCGA committees and division by March 15, 2020, on the results of the DOA's review, the RFP issued and summary of responses, and the estimated cost to relocate the Sate License Plate Agency. Requires the DOA to submit a report detailing any agreement to lease or purchase new office space for the State License Plate Agency to the specified NCGA committees and division at least 30 days prior to approval by the Council of State. Requires the DMV to report to the specified NCGA committees and division by January 15, 2021, with an itemized list of expenses associated with the DMV headquarters relocation, an itemized list of expenses associated with the State License Plate Agency relocation, and lease rates and agreements for both locations.
Directs the DMV to reopen a Division office in the Town of Marshall by January 1, 2020, with the same operating hours and services the office had prior to closing.
Amends GS 20-63 to increase the rates set for commission contracts for the issuance of registration plates and certificates. Increases the commission paid for the collection of the highway use tax or the removal of an inspection stop from $1.30 to $1.56. Increases the commission paid for specified transactions, including the issuance of a registration plate, a registration card, a registration sticker, or a certificate of title, from $1.46 to $1.75.
Directs the DMV to develop and evaluate plans to staff all Drivers License Offices currently open a minimum of five days per week with a minimum of three full-time equivalent employees by considering five specified options. Requires the DMV to submit a report outlining the options and a final recommendation by March 1, 2020, to the specified NCGA committees and division.
Authorizes the Ferry Division to contract to lease a passenger ferry vessel for operation between Hatteras and Ocracoke from May 20, 2019, to September 5, 2019, without complying with specified law. Limits the contract to no more than $1 million.
Directs DOT to conduct a feasibility study on raising ferry tolls for nonresidents. Details required considerations of the study, including compliance with federal law. Directs DOT to report its findings and recommendations to specified NCGA committee and division chairs by March 15, 2020.
Requires DOT to submit an itemized report detailing the use of all funds appropriated by the act for the Piedmont locomotives and cars to the specified NCGA committees and division by March 1, 2020. Details required content of the report.
Directs DOT to submit an itemized report detailing the use of all funds appropriated by the act for the train station maintenance needs to the specified NCGA committees and division by March 1, 2020. Details required content of the report.
Allocates $257,500 in nonrecurring funds of the funds appropriated by the act to DOT for train station maintenance to the Selma Union Station Depot for train station maintenance.
Strictly restricts use of the nonrecurring funds appropriated by the act to the NC Ports Authority for the 2019-20 fiscal year to raise the power line over the Cape Fear River near Wilmington to that single purpose, and limits allocation of the funds by DOT to the NC Ports Authority on a reimbursement basis after the Authority has provided a report outlining the costs incurred. Directs the NC Ports Authority to submit a status report, as specified, on the use of the funds to the specified NCGA committee by January 1, 2020, and quarterly thereafter until the project is completed.
Reenacts and incorporates the provisions of GS Chapter 143C, the State Budget Act.
Provides for parameters and application of the DOT biennial budget provided and adjusted by the act. Establishes that the legislative budget supersedes the budget certified by the Director of the Budget in the event line-items conflict.
Repeals Parts III and XL of HB 966 if that act becomes law.
Repeals Section 1.1(b) of SL 2019-209. However, clarifies that the instructions contained in SL 2019-209 governing the implementation of salaries and benefits apply to the funds appropriated in this act for those purposes.
Specifies that SL 2019-15, SL 2019-209, and any other enactments affecting the State budget during the 2019 Regular Session remain effective except where expressly repealed or amended.
Defines the scope of the act to funds appropriated for and activities occurring during the 2019-21 fiscal biennium unless clearly indicated otherwise.
Clarifies the effect of the act's headings.
Includes a severability clause.
Effective July 1, 2019.
Makes conforming changes to the act's titles.