AN ACT TO EXPAND ELIGIBILITY FOR UTILITY ACCOUNT FUNDS.
Amends GS 143B-437.01, which creates the Industrial Development Fund Utility Account (Utility Account) to provide funds to assist the local government units of the most economically distressed counties in creating jobs. Modifies the definition given for economically distressed county to now define the term to mean a county with total employment of less than 500,000, with the Secretary of Commerce using the latest available data published by the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program in measuring total employment (previously, defined the term to mean a county defined as a development tier one or tier two area under state law). Regarding rules the Department of Commerce is required to adopt to administer the program, adds priority guidelines as follows. Requires first priority to be given to counties defined as development tier one or tier two areas under specified state law. Then requires second priority be given to rural census tracts in counties that are defined as development tier three areas under specified state law. Defines rural census tract to mean a census tract having a population density of less than 500 people per square mile according to the most recent decennial federal census.
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