Raleigh, N.C. — Good morning and welcome to Today @NCCapitol for Friday, April 5. This is WRAL's roundup of what you need to know about North Carolina state government this morning.
TODAY: No legislative committee meetings or floor sessions are scheduled for today. Gov. Pat McCrory has one event on his public schedule. He will speak to the NC Institute of Minority Economic Development at noon in Pinehurst.
COMING NEXT WEEK: House Speaker Thom Tillis and Republican House leaders have filed a new proposal to require photo identification for voters. House Bill 589, entitled the Voter Information Verification Act, or VIVA, was filed Thursday afternoon, after what Tillis said was "a transparent and deliberative process" of seeking public input.
Under the proposal, beginning in 2016, voters would be required to show a photo ID at the polls. The bill would allow "multiple forms of state-issued ID," according to Rep. Tom Murry, R-Wake, including tribal cards, public university IDs and state employee IDs. Private university IDs would not qualify.
Voters without a photo ID will be allowed to cast a provisional ballot but would have to return to their local board of elections with a valid photo ID to have the ballot counted.
Opponents called the measure "a giant waste of money."
A public hearing on the bill is scheduled for Wednesday, April 10, at 4 p.m.
IF YOU MISSED THEM: Among the stories we were following Thursday:
TAXES: Republicans plans to remake the state's tax code are already encountering resistance. In broad terms, GOP lawmakers say they want to lower personal and corporate income taxes and replace some of the lost revenue by applying sales taxes to more things, including services. Realtors, for example, have started an online campaign warning of the cost of blanket tax reform. "Imagine selling your home and being forced to pay an 8 percent tax to the Realtor, an 8 percent tax to the attorney and an 8 percent tax to the appraiser," an online commercial states.
CURSIVE: State House lawmakers voted unanimously Thursday to require elementary school students to be taught cursive handwriting and to memorize multiplication tables. Rep. Pat Hurley, R-Randolph, is the sponsor of House Bill 146, known as the "Back to Basics" bill. She said she filed the proposal after receiving a bunch of printed thank-you notes from a local fourth-grade class that visited her in Raleigh.
RELIGION: A House resolution supporting the creation of an official religion in North Carolina will never come to a vote, officials said Thursday. House Speaker Thom Tillis' office said House Joint Resolution 494 was dead.
DRUNK DRIVING: State House lawmakers voted overwhelmingly Thursday for tighter alcohol restrictions for people convicted of impaired driving.
PARTISAN ELECTIONS: The Republican majority in the House approved a bill Thursday calling for partisan elections for Sanford City Council and the Lee County Board of Elections. House Bill 490 normally would have required only a voice vote because it was local legislation, but opponents demanded a roll call vote after unsuccessfully trying to shout down supporters. The bill passed on a 69-38 vote and heads to the Senate.