Bill Summary for H 1043 (2019-2020)

Summary date: 

Apr 30 2020

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2019-2020 Session
House Bill 1043 (Public) Filed Tuesday, April 28, 2020
AN ACT TO PROVIDE AID TO NORTH CAROLINIANS IN RESPONSE TO THE CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19) CRISIS.
Intro. by Bell, Jackson, Lewis.

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Bill summary

House committee substitute makes the following changes to the 2nd edition. Amends the act's short title.

Part I.

Incorporates all content of the 1st edition of House Bill 1039 (An Act to Provide Aid to North Carolinians in Response to the Coronavirus Crisis by Increasing Access to Unemployment Benefits, Providing Employers a Suta Tax Credit, Waiving the Accrual of Interest on Certain Tax Payments, and Extending Certain Tax-Related Deadlines, as Recommended by the Economic Support Working Group of the House Select Committee on COVID-19). The summary of the bill can be found here: https://lrs.sog.unc.edu/node/487014  

Incorporates all content of the 2nd edition of House Bill 1034 (An Act to Provide Funds for Small Business Loan Assistance). Summaries of the bill can be found here: https://lrs.sog.unc.edu/bill/small-business-emergency-loans

Part II.

Incorporates the content of the 1st edition of House Bill 1035 (An Act to Provide Relief to Elementary and Secondary School Students, Postsecondary School Students, School Personnel, and Educational Entities of the State to Accommodate Extraordinary Circumstances Due to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), as Recommended by the Education Working Group of the House Select Committee on COVID-19. The summary of the bill can be found here: https://lrs.sog.unc.edu/bill/education-omnibuscovid-19), with the following changes.

Advanced Courses in Mathematics

Deletes language providing that the provisions of GS 115C-81.36(a1) and (b) do not apply for the 2020-21 school year. Specifies that initial math placement for all students for the 2020-21 school year must be made consistent with local policies, in consultation with a student’s 2019-20 school year math teacher (previously, permitted placement consistent with local policies). Adds that students, or their parents on their behalf, not initially placed in advanced courses or advanced learning opportunities in math can request testing to determine math placement for the 2020-21 school year. Provides for placement for highest level scoring on the math end-of-grades or end-of course tests pursuant to specified state law. Makes organizational changes.

School Calendar for the 2019-20 School Year

Makes technical and conforming changes to the section and subsection headings.

Eliminates the provisions stating the legislative intent to provide for supplemental jump start instruction in August of 2020, and permitting public school units to open as early as August 17, 2020.

School Calendar for the 2020-21 School Year

Adds the following new provisions. Directs the governing body of each public school unit to develop a Remote Instruction Plan (Plan) for the 2020-21 school year and submit its Plan to the State Board of Education (State Board) by July 20, 2020. Details 13 specifications Plans must address, including (1) training for teachers and staff, (2) surveying student and teacher home connectivity and providing for remote instruction appropriate for those with limited connectivity capability, (3) teaching and practice opportunities for students on accessing and using remote instruction platforms and methods, (4) communicating learning targets to students on each remote instruction day with lesson design to demonstrate learning, (5) tracking and reporting attendance on remote instruction days, (6) providing online and offline contact options for student-teacher or staff communication, and (7) providing technology support for students.

Provides that the calendar requirements of GS 115C-84.2 apply to the 2020-21 school calendar for local school administrative units. Establishes that the provisions of the act supersede any school calendar adopted by a public school unit prior to the act’s enactment. Sets forth parameters applicable to the 2020-21 school year for public school units as follows. Mandates that each public school unit adopt a calendar that includes 190 days of instruction with 185 days or 1,025 hours of instruction that includes five remote instruction days pursuant to the Plan, and five individually separate and distinct full instructional days. Requires adoption of a school calendar that includes an opening date for students of August 17, 2020, a closing date for students no later than June 11, 2021, and no remote instruction days prior to August 24, 2020. Allows for remote instruction days to be scheduled for use as teacher workdays. Provides for waiver of the opening date requirement for good cause so long as the opening date is not before August 17, 2020, and allows use of an additional five remote instruction days as make-up days for closure due to inclement weather or other emergency situations. Allows for additional remote instruction days, provided in accordance with the Plan, to satisfy instructional time requirements if a state of emergency or disaster is declared under GS Chapter 166A ordering school closure for more than five days.

Requires the State Board to report to the specified NCGA committee by September 15, 2020, on the implementation of Remote Instruction Plans. Requires the report to include copies of each Plan submitted and a statewide summary with five specified components and any other data deemed by the State Board to be useful to the committee in evaluating the delivery of statewide remote instruction.

School Improvement Plans

Adds a new section. Extends the validity of school improvement plans set to expire at the end of the 2019-20 school year until December 31, 2020, to allow additional time for consideration and adoption of a new plan; specifies that the replacement plan for these extended plans expire in 18 months, rather than two years.

Use of Regional Council of Governments in Administration of FEMA Public Assistance and Individual Assistance Funds

Authorizes the Department of Emergency management to use the NC Regional Councils of Government in administering FEMA public assistance and individual assistance funds. Requires compliance with Article 19 of GS Chapter 153A and Article 160A of GS Chapter 160A. Allows for the provision of assistance with training, grant applications, and other requested services by qualifying local governments and allows a regional council to be designated by a local government to administer any FEMA public assistance funds on its behalf.

North Carolina Scholarship for Children of Wartime Veterans

Eliminates the proposed provisions regarding a waiver from the limitation on the period of time to receive a scholarship under the Children of Wartime Veterans Scholarship program.

Part III.

Incorporates the content of the 2nd edition of House Bill 1037 (An Act Expanding the State’s Capacity to Take Public Health and Safety Measures to address the COVID-19 Emergency, as Recommended by the Health Care Working Group of the House Select Committee on COVID-19, summaries of the bill can be found here: https://lrs.sog.unc.edu/bill/covid-19-health-care-working-group-policy-rec), with the following changes.

Affirmations of Actions Taken in Response to COVID-19

Removes the statement that the NCGA supports the actions taken by the Governor pursuant to Executive Order No. 116 and Executive Order No. 130, and the actions taken by the Department of Health and Human Services in response to the COVID-19 emergency.

Prescription Identification Requirements

Instead of requiring pharmacists to review a patient’s information in the controlled substances reporting system for the preceding 12 months before dispensing a prescription for a Schedule II controlled substance, now states that nothing in the provision is to be construed to relieve a pharmacist of the obligation to review information in the controlled substances reporting system in accordance with GS 90-133.74D. Removes the requirement for a courier, before delivering a mail-order prescription, to confirm the identity of the recipient through the visual inspection of a government issued photo identification.

Authorization for Pharmacists to Administer COVID-19 Tests

Removes the changes to GS 90-85.3A that would have allowed pharmacists to administer diagnostic tests and antibody tests for coronavirus disease 2019.

Part IV.

Incorporates all content of the 2nd edition of House Bill 1038 (An Act Making Omnibus Appropriations of Federal Funds for COVID-19 Response and Relief Efforts in North Carolina, as Recommended by the House Select Committee on COVID-19), summaries of the bill can be found here: https://lrs.sog.unc.edu/bill/omnimbus-covid-19-response-funds-new, with the following change.

Summer Learning Plan Date Submission

Adds a new section. Regarding the $70 million required to be allocated to the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) for local school administrative units, charter schools and the Innovative School District (ISD) to provide supplemental summer learning programs for students negatively affected by the impacts of COVID-19, requires local units and the ISD to submit their summer learning program plans to DPI by June 22, 2020, rather than May 31, 2020.

Part V.

Rule 5 Service Declaration of Emergency

Eliminates the previously proposed provisions amending Rule 5, Service and filing of pleadings and other papers, in GS Chapter 1A-1.

Disbursement of Funds Prior to Recordation of Deed in Certain Circumstances

Amends proposed GS 45A-4.1 concerning the disbursement of closing funds during certain declarations of emergency. Removes the requirement for all parties to agree in writing to the requirements of GS 45A-4 that closing funds be disbursed only upon collected funds.

Clarify Electronic Signatures for Search Warrants and Certain Court Orders

Permits use of electronic signature for signatures required for search warrants or any judicial order following a court hearing conducted by remote audio or visual transmission in a civil or criminal case. Expires August 1, 2020.

Authorizes the Chairman of the ABC Commission to Allow Certain Sales during the Coronavirus Emergency.

Authorizes the Chairman of the ABC Commission (Chairman) to allow mixed beverage permittees to engage in retail sales for consumption off the premises, including delivery by the permittee, an employee of the permittee, or independent contractor. Makes coordinating authorizations concerning delivery service permittees. Allows the Chairman to set terms and conditions for the sales and deliveries, but requires that products sold or delivered under the provision to be (1) packaged in a container with a secure lid or cap and in a manner designed to prevent consumption without removal, (2) sold only with food, and (3) limited to two servings per meal or food item ordered.

Expires on the date that Executive Order 116, declaring a state of emergency to coordinate COVID-19 response, expires or is rescinded.

Extend Time Period to Claim Lottery Prizes

Allows a lottery prize winner to submit a delayed claim that is expiring or awarded between March 10, 2020, and August 1, 2020. Requires the claim to be submitted to the Lottery Commission in writing no more than 90 days after the date the online game prize was announced or the instant game has closed.

New Attorneys’ Oath

Postpones the expiration of the provisions allowing for remote administration of the required oath of new attorneys from August 1, 2020, to December 1, 2020.

(1) Allows the Department of Environmental Quality to Establish Emergency Measures and Procedures Applicable to Solid Waste Management; (2) Expand Local Government Authority to Request Waivers from the Department with Respect to Certain Items Banned from Landfills; and (3) To Allow Private Companies Providing Collection Services For Yard Trash to Request a Waiver from the Department to Allow Disposal of Yard Trash Collected in a Landfill in Consideration of Impacts to Public Health, During the COVID-19 State of Emergency.

Adds the defined term Coronavirus emergency and defines the term to mean the period from March 10, 2020, through August 1, 2020. Authorizes the Secretary of the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) or an authorized representative to develop and implement any emergency measures and procedures necessary for the proper management of solid waste generated during the Coronavirus emergency, upon request of a public or private landfill operator or the Secretary’s own initiative. Requires written notice of emergency measures and procedures to be provided to the news media, waste organizations, governmental organizations and other interested or affected parties. Provides examples of emergency procedures and measures. Requires State agencies and political subdivisions to cooperate with the implementation of such procedures and measures. Expires August 1, 2020.

Adds a new section to allow a county or city, or a private company that is providing collection services for yard trash, to petition DEQ for a waiver from the prohibition or disposal of yard trash in a landfill during the Coronavirus emergency, defined as the same period as above, based on a showing that prohibiting the disposal would constitute an economic hardship or a real or potential health risk. Details specific parameters for a private company’s petition. Expires August 1, 2020.

Expand Who May Be Appointed Medical Examiner

Deletes the proposed changes to GS 130A-383 concerning unclaimed body disposal.

Charitable Solicitations Application Review

Deletes the proposed changes to GS 131F-5 concerning licensure of charitable organizations.

Extend Validity of Probationary Certificates Issued by the North Carolina Code Officials Qualifications Board

Further extends the validity of any probationary certificates issued to Code-enforcement officials to provide for validity until March 12, 2021, of certificates set to expire between March 10, 2020, and March 10, 2021 (was, until August 1, 2020, for certificates set to expire between March 10, 2020, and July 31, 2020).

Clarify Available for Public Inspection/Local Government Budget Process

Adds a new section to amend GS 159G-12 to no longer specifically require local government budget officers to submit copies of the budget submitted to the governing board to the board’s clerk in the clerk’s office, or for the copy to be available for public inspection in the clerk’s office. However, maintains the requirement for submission of a copy of the budget. Adds a new provision allowing for the clerk to post a copy of the budget on the local government’s website and requires providing copies pursuant to state public records law.

Reinstate Special Obligation Bonds

Further amends GS 153A-427 to make more conforming and clarifying changes to the reinstatement of special obligation bonds in GS Chapter 159.

Floodplain Maps by Incorporation into Local Ordinances

Adds a new section to allow local land use development ordinances to reference or incorporate by reference flood insurance rate maps, watershed boundary maps, or other maps officially adopted or promulgated by State and federal agencies, subject to the specified parameters and requirements. Expires August 1, 2020.

Extend Ordinance/Rule Reporting

Deletes the proposed changes to Sections 5 and 6 of SL 2019-198 and instead provides for the identical language of those provisions with the identical proposed changes as uncodified language. Makes conforming changes. Additionally, permits the General Statutes Commission to make an interim report to the 2020 Regular Session of the 2019 General Assembly and the specified NCGA committee on recommendations concerning whether conduct criminalized by local ordinance or in the Administrative Code should have generally applicable criminal penalties in state law, prior to the required final report on or before March 1, 2021.

Extend the North Carolina Child Well-Being Transformation Council

Adds a new section. Amends Section 24.1 of SL 2018-5 to postpone the final reporting deadline and termination of the Children’s Council from June 30, 2020, to January 15, 2021.

Transportation Network Company Signage Requirements

Adds a new section. Amends Section 2 of SL 2019-194 to postpone the effective date of the signage requirements of GS 20-280.5(e) and (f), as enacted in the act, from July 1, 2020, to July 1, 2021.

Extend the Joint Legislative Study Committee on Small Business Retirement Options

Adds a new section. Amends SL 2019-205, which establishes the Joint Legislative Study Committee on Small Business Retirement Options (Committee). Currently, the Committee is required to report to the Speaker of the House and the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and the Fiscal Research Division by March 31, 2020, by which time the Committee is terminated. Amends the provisions to require the Committee to report interim findings by March 31, 2020, and to report its final findings and recommendations by December 1, 2020. Requires the Committee to terminate upon submission of the final report or December 1, 2020, whichever occurs first. Effective retroactively to March 31, 2020.

Authorize State Agencies to Exercise Regulatory Flexibility During the Coronavirus Emergency in Order to Protect the Economic Well-Being of the Citizens and Businesses of the State

Adds a new section. Allows state agencies, as defined, to (1) delay collection of or modify collection of any fees, fines, or late payments accessed by the agency, (2) delay the renewal dates of permits, licenses, and similar certifications, registrations, and authorizations issued by the agency, and (3) delay or modify any educational or examination requirements implemented by the agency. Requires the state agency to determine that for the action to be in the public interest due to the impacts of the Coronavirus, as defined by federal statutory cross-reference. Defines state agency to specifically exclude the Division of Employment Security of the Department of Commerce, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the State Board of Education, the Department of Public Instruction, UNC, the State Board of Community Colleges, and the State Board of Elections. Requires agencies to report to the specified NCGA committees and commission and the Office of State Budget and Management (OSBM) by October 1, 2020, on its exercise of this regulatory flexibility. Requires agencies to exercise the authority granted to the maximum extent possible to protect the economic well-being of the citizens and businesses of the State and continuing to protect public health, safety, and welfare.

Authorizes agencies to adopt emergency rules for implementation, which sunset on August 1, 2020. Prohibits the adoption of temporary rules pursuant to these provisions.

Effective retroactively to March 10, 2020. Expires August 1, 2020, except for the reporting requirement.

Authorize Extension of Training and Certification of Law Enforcement Officers by Forensic Tests for Alcohol Branch

Adds a new section. Authorizes the Forensic Tests for Alcohol Branch (Branch) of DHHS to delay or modify any educational or exam requirements for recertification of law enforcement officers. Allows the Branch to extend issued certifications if educational and exam requirements are delayed. Effective March 10, 2020, and expires January 1, 2021.

Extend Certain Local Government Approvals Affecting the Development of Real Property within the State

Adds a new section. Extends the expiration date and associated vested right of any development approval that is current and valid during the period beginning March 10, 2020, and ending April 28, 2020, for five months. Defines development approval as any of the following land development approval issued by a local government: approval of an erosion and sedimentation control plan; any building permit; approval by a county or city of sketch plans, preliminary plats, subdivision plats, a site specific development plan or phased development plan, a development permit, a development agreement, or a building permit; or any certificate of appropriateness issued by a preservation commission. Defines the term development.

Details construction and implementation of the provisions. Details responsibilities of the holder of any development approval extended by the provisions, including maintaining all performance guarantees imposed as conditional approval.

Provides for possible termination of the extension for failure to comply with the provisions. Provides for notice and appeal of termination of approval.

Expires September 28, 2020.

DOT Emergency Reserve/Clarifications/Modifications

Adds a new section. Amends GS 136-44.2E, as enacted by SL 2019-251, which creates the Transportation Emergency Reserve (Emergency Reserve). Changes the funding of the Reserve to now require the Department of Transportation (DOT) to annually transfer $125 million from Highway Fund appropriations (rather than the Highway Fund) to the Emergency Reserve. Further modifies the provisions to appropriate the transferred funds for expenses related to an emergency and for unreimbursed expenditures arising from the emergency (previously, emergency expenses only). Expands DOT’s access to the Emergency Reserve funds to include when the US Secretary of Transportation authorizes the expenditure of emergency relief funds pursuant to specified federal law and when the Governor declares a disaster pursuant to GS 166A-19.21, in addition to the existing condition of a Presidential disaster declaration.

Amends SL 2019-251, Section 1.3, to allow DOT to use the $64 million the State Controller is required to transfer to the Emergency Reserve within 30 days of the effective date of SL 2019-251 for any emergency occurring after December 31, 2015, that qualifies under GS 136-44.2E.

Directs DOT not to transfer funds to the Emergency Reserve for the 2020-21 fiscal year.

Amends SL 2019-251, Section 1.7, to modify the required allocations of the $36 million appropriated from the General Fund to DOT for the 2019-20 fiscal year in the act to require $30 million to be used for current and future unreimbursed expenditures (was, for current and future activities).

NCDOT Cash Floor

Exempts from the provisions, which prohibits further contract commitments by DOT if the required $125 million cash floor is not maintained, contracts entered into in response to an emergency or disaster declaration and future transportation project contract commitments that are funded by federal bonds or grants, or State bonds. Defines emergency and disaster declaration by statutory cross-reference.

Part VI.

Includes a severability clause.

Part VII.

Effective when the act becomes law, unless otherwise indicated.

Makes additional organizational and technical changes.

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