Today @NCCapitol (Feb. 3): Working on budget fixes

Posted February 3, 2015

This is the N.C. Legislative Building as seen on Feb. 2, 2015 at 6 p.m.

— Good morning and welcome to Today @NCCapitol for Tuesday, Feb. 3. Here's what's going on at the legislature and beyond: 

Committees we're watching: The Senate Budget Committee will take up a number of technical bills, including one to fix a funding snag with the new Coal Ash Management Commission. Senate Bill 14, filed Monday night, would also provide funding for the Academic Standards Review Commission, which is tasked with creating North Carolina's alternative to the Common Core educational standards. (8:30 a.m. | Room 643 at the Legislative Office Building)

Floor sessions: The House will meet at 4 p.m. but has no bills on its floor calendar. The Senate meets at 2 p.m. but has no bills on its floor calendar. 

Advocates: The legislature's news conference room is scheduled to host two groups of advocates:

  • At noon, bipartisan group of lawmakers will make the case that an independent commission, rather than lawmakers themselves, should draw congressional and legislative districts. Leaving lawmakers in charge, advocates say, leads to gerrymandered, uncompetitive districts. But Senate leaders are cool to the prospect. "I have yet to see a so-called independent redistricting commission that is truly independent," Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger told the Associated Press last week.
  • Rep. Susi Hamilton, D-New Hanover, and other Democratic legislators will host a news conference on economic development at 1 p.m. 

Council of State: The Council of State will meet at 9 a.m. This group of statewide elected leaders handles mainly real estate matters. The group is expected to approve the sale of nearly 4 acres of unused State Fairgrounds property to The Raleigh School, which wants to expand its campus. 

Quotable: "I say this to you: I have learned my lesson." – Gov. Pat McCrory at the investiture ceremony for Shelby Stephenson, North Carolina's new poet laureate. McCrory's remark was a reference to the uproar caused when he attempted earlier in 2014 to name a less qualified candidate to the post. 

ICYMI: State Treasurer Janet Cowell says state lawmakers have plenty of room to borrow money through bonds – as much $4.5 billion over the next five years.

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  • Danny22 Feb 3, 2015