Today @NCCapitol (April 9): Committees dealing with taxes, car insurance and school safety
Posted April 9, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — Good morning and welcome to Today @NCCapitol for Tuesday, April 9. This is WRAL's roundup of what you need to know about North Carolina state government this morning.
FULL LOBBY: Lawmakers are due to hear from a number of advocacy groups today, including the NAACP and North Carolina Women United, will hold lobby days at the legislative building.
SENATE SESSION: The Senate meets at 2 p.m. and has only one bill on its calendar. The measure, which received tentative approval over night, is designed to thwart bank scams aimed at the elderly.
HOUSE SESSION: The House is scheduled to meet at 2 p.m. The chamber has eight bills on its calendar but the most interesting business it might handle isn't on the agenda yet. Bill sponsors tell Capitol Bureau Chief Laura Leslie that the Honest Lottery Act, which would place restrictions on lottery advertising could make its way onto the floor today. WRAL.com plans to carry this meeting live. Check the Video Central box on the home page.
COMMERCE MONDAY: Gov. Pat McCrory said Monday that he wants to create a nonprofit to handle North Carolina's economic development efforts. The Partnership for Prosperity, headed by a board of directors that McCrory would chair, would oversee small business development, entrepreneurship, international investment, imports and exports and travel and tourism.
Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker said many details of the nonprofit won't be worked out until June, but McCrory said it will be more competitive than the current system, where state, regional and nonprofit efforts are not coordinated.
The Wrap @NCCapitol (April 8) It's worth noting that these changes would require legislative approval and lawmakers plan to be leaving town in the first part of June.
WRAP: Capitol Bureau Chief Laura Leslie and reporter Mark Binker chew over Gov. McCrory's plan to privatize much of the Commerce Department and look ahead to Tuesday's action in The Wrap @NCCapitol.
COMMITTEES: For a full list of today's committee action, see the main @NCCapitol page. Among the highlights.
House Education (10 a.m. | LOB 643): The committee will deal with bills to require arts education for graduation and a bipartisan school safety bill. WRAL.com plans to carry this meeting live. Check the Video Central box on the home page.
Senate Judiciary 2 (10 a.m. | LB 1124): The committee takes up a bill requiring drug testing for benefits of the state's welfare program.
Senate Agriculture (11 a.m. | LOB 544): The committee considers whether hunting with silencers on rifles should be allowed.
House Insurance (1 p.m. | LB 1228): Lawmakers are scheduled to look at a bill to change how auto insurance rates are determined. Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin says the bill and a companion measure in the Senate could raise rates on North Carolina drivers.
House Transportation (Noon | LOB 643): The committee takes up a bill that would require mopeds be registered with the DMV like cars and that riders carry liability insurance.
Senate Finance (1 p.m. } LOB 544): Senators take up another in a series of tax reform bills. This measure would lower corporate income tax rates. According to Finance Chairman Bob Rucho, R-Mecklenburg, this will be another meeting aimed at educating people about the various pieces of tax reform. Sometime in the next four weeks, he said, the Senate will roll out a comprehensive tax reform measure that remakes all aspects of the state's tax code.
MONDAY STORIES: Other stories we were following Monday included:
PRINCEVILLE: The State Auditor's Office on Monday asked local, state and federal authorities to look into the actions of Princeville officials after an audit found improper spending in the Edgecombe County town.
PERDUE: A Wake County grand jury on Monday asked District Attorney Colon Willoughby to determine whether a supporter of former Gov. Beverly Perdue violated state campaign finance laws.
MCCRORY: A spokeswoman for Gov. Pat McCrory says his appointment of a campaign fundraiser to the state Board of Transportation does not conflict with an appeal McCrory made in 2008 for higher ethical standards in state government.
BALLOTS: A bill filed by Rep. Bert Jones, R-Rockingham, and Rep. Justin Burr, R-Stanly, could force roughly 25 counties to do away with their voting machines. House Bill 607 would require that all ballots cast in North Carolina be paper ballots.
PETS: A bill filed by a bipartisan group of House lawmakers would make it a crime to leave pets unattended in a car in hot or cold conditions and would give law enforcement the authority to take action to save them.
DEMOCRATS: North Carolina Democrats on Monday called for Republican Gov. Pat McCrory to stand up to what they consider radical GOP lawmakers pushing a series of bills designed to restrict turnout among certain blocs of voters.