Tuesday Wrap: Let's call the whole thing off
Posted February 24, 2015
Updated February 25, 2015
Raleigh, N.C. — For the second straight week, winter weather is wreaking havoc with the General Assembly.
Both the House and the Senate held skeleton sessions again Tuesday, and House Speaker Tim Moore said the House wouldn't meet at all Wednesday or Thursday. Senate leaders plan to gavel in Wednesday morning before checking out the forecast and deciding whether to capitulate to Mother Nature as well.
The Senate did move one bill through committee Tuesday morning that could hit the floor Wednesday if a session proceeds. The bill would allow magistrates and register of deeds staffers to temporarily opt out of performing marriages or issuing marriage licenses if they have religious objections to same-sex marriage. Supporters say it's a question of religious liberty and insist that procedures are in place to ensure any couple that wants to get married can do so, but opponents say it creates a slippery slope of allowing civil servants to pick and choose which duties they want to perform.
Even though the House didn't meet, members filed a bill that would expand some economic incentives programs that Gov. Pat McCrory's administration has been pushing for to help business-recruitment efforts. The bill doesn't address restoring the expired historic preservation tax credit or include a provision that would allow crowd-funding, however.
Finally, Transportation Secretary Tony Tata wasn't even in Raleigh, but he couldn't escape getting hit by a few snowballs. Tata left North Carolina on Monday night to promote his new novel in Chicago – and make one of his increasingly prevalent appearances on cable news – and caught grief from some left-leaning groups for not being present to oversee snow removal efforts on state highways.