Having run through the House committee chair nominees earlier, I figured the Senate committee chair list deserves equal time. It’s worth noting that presumptive Pro Tem Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) has named two or more co-chairs for most committees without denoting any as “senior.”
Senate Appropriations: Senators Pete Brunstetter (R-Forsyth), Neal Hunt (R-Wake), and Richard Stevens (R-Wake). Stevens is the most senior senator of the three. And as former Wake County Manager, he’s probably got the most budget-writing experience, too.
It’s interesting that two of the three are Wake Co. lawmakers. That could bode well for Raleigh. (Relatively speaking, anyway – this probably won’t be a good budget cycle for any part of the state.)
Finance: Senators Bob Rucho (R-Mecklenburg) and Fletcher Hartsell (R-Cabarrus)
Rules: Former minority whip Tom Apodaca (R-Henderson)
Judiciary I: Forsyth Senator Pete Brunstetter, who’s going to be awfully busy trying to balance J-1 and Approps.
Judiciary II: Senators Austin Allran (R-Catawba), E.S. “Buck” Newton (R-
Wilson), and Warren Daniel (R-Burke). Both Newton and Daniel are freshmen.
Health Care: Senators Stan Bingham (R-Davidson), Harris Blake (R-Moore), and Louis Pate (R-Wayne). Bingham was also Health Care co-chair under Basnight. The three will also co-chair the Approps/Health Care subcommittee.
Education/Higher Ed: Senators Jean Preston (R-Carteret), Jerry Tillman (R-Randolph), and freshman Dan Soucek (R-Watauga). Preston and Tillman will co-chair the Approps/Education subcommittee, along with Apodaca.
Commerce: Senate Majority Leader Harry Brown (R-Onslow)
Agriculture/Environment/Natural Resources: Senators Don East (R-Surry) and
David Rouzer (R-Johnston). Freshman Brent Jackson (R-Sampson) will be vice chair.
Program Evaluation: Senator Debbie Clary (R-Cleveland)
As I noted in the House post, these nominations aren’t effective until Berger is officially elected Senate President Pro Tem, but there’s no reason to think that won’t happen.