Raleigh, N.C. — It's April 15, and lawmakers are trying to cram in as much legislating as possible before the bill-crossover deadline on April 30.
Bills getting committee nods on Wednesday included two immigration-related measures. One would grant "restricted" driving permits to undocumented people living in the state, while the other would expand the number of firms required to check employees' immigrant status through the federal E-Verify system.
Committees also passed proposals to ban the sale of powdered alcohol in North Carolina, allow hunting on private property on Sundays and exempt possums from state wildlife regulations for one week a year (thus allowing the annual New Year's Eve Possum Drop in Clay County).
Some senators expressed reservations about a bill that would charge students 16 and older who assault a teacher at school with a felony. Lawmakers said they would prefer if the scope of the bill were narrowed so that teens don't carry a felony record around with them for decades simply for threatening or intimidating a teacher.
Because Wednesday was Tax Day (have you filed yours yet?), Democrats held a news conference to relate the stories of a few people hurt by the Republican-led 2013 tax overhaul. Legislative leaders say taxpayers overall are paying less, and they want to review cases where people have been adversely affected to determine if some tweaks are needed.