Today @NCCapitol (April 15): Taxing Tax Day on tap at General Assembly

Posted April 15, 2015

NC Legislative Building

— Good morning and welcome to Today @NCCapitol for Wednesday, April 15. Here's what's going on at the General Assembly and elsewhere in state government.

TAX DAY: In case you've forgotten, Wednesday is the deadline to pay your personal income taxes to the state and federal governments. Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger met with reporters after session on Tuesday to tout tax changes made in 2013. During the conversation, Berger hinted that more tax changes could be in store in the coming years.

"I think there's still and interest and a desire among our members to look at providing the broadest possible tax relief," he said.

Asked about complaints from seniors that the loss of the medical tax deduction was raising their overall tax bill, Berger said, "We've also received some concerns and questions about that." Senators and their staff, he said, have been asking for copies of their tax documents so they can see if there is some way to fix what may be an issue.

As for others who might feel that tax reform wasn't a good deal, Berger said he believe the data – and an individual's own tax returns – would bear him out.

"All we can do is answer the questions and provide the information based on the data," he said.

ADVOCATES: The liberal group Progress NC will likely have a different take when it holds a news conference at 10:30 a.m. in the legislative press room with Senate Minority Leader Dan Blue and House Minority Leader Larry Hall. "We’re seeing stories across the state of seniors, small-business owners, students and their parents all paying higher state taxes," said Gerrick Brenner, Progress NC's director.

SENATE SESSION: The state Senate is scheduled to meet at 2 p.m. A handful of relatively non-controversial bills are on the printed calendar.

HOUSE SESSION: The state House is scheduled to meet at 3 p.m. Already on the calendar is a measure that would repeal the requirement that teachers draft personal education plans for most students. House Speaker Tim Moore said he planned to add more bills to the calendar as they emerged from jam-packed committee schedules Tuesday. WRAL.com plans to carry the House session live online.

HAVE A "DRINK:" The House ABC Committee takes up a proposal to ban powdered alcohol at 11 a.m.

TEACHER ASSAULT: The Senate Education Committee takes up a bill to make an assault on a teacher by older students a felony and another measure aimed at curbing the political activity of on-duty school employees.

CONSULAR DOCUMENTS: House Commerce takes up a bill that would ban government recognition of consular documents and a second measure that would make changes to billboard regulations across the state. WRAL.com plans to carry this meeting live at 11 a.m.

DRIVING: House Judiciary I takes up a bill to create a "restricted driving permit" for undocumented immigrants. WRAL.com plans to carry this meeting live at 12:30 p.m.

POSSUMS: The House Wildlife Committee takes up the latest in a series of bills designed to make a New Year's Eve possum drop legal. Other bills in the committee would deal with body cameras for wildlife officers and Sunday hunting.

WHY FLAGS ARE AT HALF STAFF: In recognition of the Day of Remembrance for President Abraham Lincoln, Gov. Pat McCrory ordered U.S. and North Carolina flags lowered to half-staff on state facilities from sunrise to sunset on April 15, 2015, which is 150 years after Lincoln's death.


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