Today @NCCapitol (March 18): Town and country come to Raleigh

Posted March 18, 2015

NC Flag, Legislative Building, Raleigh

— Good morning and welcome to Today @NCCapitol for Wednesday, March 18. Here's what's going on at the legislature and around state government.

The North Carolina League of Municipalities and agriculture interests will hold lobby days at the General Assembly. Both groups will give the state's top leaders a chance to sound off during what is shaping up to be a "Town and County" sort of day.

AG AWARENESS: Gov. Pat McCrory will hold an Agriculture Awareness Day on the State Capitol grounds at 11 a.m.

CITIES: At 1 p.m., Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore are due to address the League of Municipalities lobby day in the third-floor legislative auditorium. Later in the day, McCrory will speak to city leaders at the North Carolina Museum of History. plans to stream both meetings live online.

ALCOHOL: The House ABC Committee will meet at 11 a.m. to hear from craft brewers and beer wholesalers. Later in the day, the governor's task force on substance abuse and underage drinking holds its first meeting at 1:30 p.m.

HOUSE: The House meets at 3 p.m. and will take up a bill to require students take one class in the arts between sixth grade and 12th grade. A package of criminal law changes is also on the calendar. plans to stream this meeting live online.

SENATE: The Senate will go into session at 9:15 a.m., but the full floor session won't begin until some unspecified time later in the day. This will allow lawmakers to move bills from one committee to another. When the session does happen, senators are expected to take up Board of Governors nominations for the University of North Carolina system.

COMMITTEES WE'RE WATCHING PART I: The Senate Commerce and Finance committees are scheduled to meet at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. It's possible that a bill aimed at lowering electric rates for ElectriCities customers in eastern North Carolina crops up, but we've been told not to be surprised if an economic development bill emerges this week.

COMMITTEES WE'RE WATCHING PART II: The House has a number of entertaining committee meetings Wednesday, including:

  • House Health at 10 a.m., which will discuss a measure that would turn state-run substance abuse centers over to the state's nine LME-MCOs, which serve as public-private clearinghouses for mental health care.
  • House Judiciary III will take up the measure that would keep the names of lottery winners confidential at 12:30 p.m.
  • House Ethics is scheduled to meet at 2 p.m. and hear from the Secretary of State's Office. They're not expected to take up until next week a bill that would make it a conflict of interest for lawmakers to vote on a bill if they are kanoodling with a lobbyist pushing for or against the measure.‚Äč

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