House gives final approval to state budget, changes to elections laws
The state House takes its final vote on the $25.9 billion budget proposal.
spanish pair will be offered by Representative doll. Mhm Representative um would ask everyone to please stand for the prayer on the floor as well as our guests in the gallery and remain standing for the pledge of allegiance thereafter. Representative, if we could please take a moment of silence for those who pray differently than today. I come to you with a prayer of listening. I ask that you listen to those that do not agree with you. Listen to those you fear don't like you. Listen to those who are different from you. Listen with the intent intent of learning and understanding that we are all God's Children and we all seek to understand God's will thank you and Amen. Mm hmm. Mhm. Mhm Yeah. Jump from caldwell represent hall recognized promotion. Mr Speaker. The journal for November 17 has been examined and found to be correct. I move that it be approved as written represented. Hall moves the journal for November 17 be approved as written. Those in favor will say, aye. Those opposed no, the eyes have it and the journal is approved as written ratification bills, resolutions the quirk will reach. Then roll The clerk reports the following bill duly ratified for presentation to the governor Hospital 91. An act to restructure oversight of public high school interscholastic athletic activities to ensure accountability and fair play. House Bill 1 65 An Act to make various changes to transportation and motor vehicle laws of the state. Yeah. Chapter bills will be noted Members Mr Chair directs that Senate Bill 7 24 expand access to voting chair directs that will be removed from days counter bill referred to return to the committee on campaigns and election law. Yeah. Members are going to proceed on with the budget vote. Senate Bill 105. The Cork will read seven senator speech Jackson Harrington and Heist City about 105 built the entitled 2021 appropriations act, general symbol of North line in that the gentleman from Forsyth Representative Lambeth is recognized to debate the bill and the House will come to order. Thank you MR Speaker and thank you colleagues. You know, we've we've said it many times this year. Uh, this has been an extremely unusual year, extraordinary in so many respects. I've even referred to it as such a weird period of time in our our state, in our nation's history, things that we would have never imagined things that we're dealing with it again. We would never imagine that we would be confronted with lots of concerns across our nation and our state. But this is really a time that I think we've been able to come together because I think everyone in this room would agree we're all here because we're trying to do the things for the people in north Carolina that we represent. We may look a little different. We may have a little different philosophy on things, but I think there's no question that everyone in this room is here because they love north Carolina. They love their community and they want to do what's right for their community. And I can tell you that there's things in this budget, although I refer to it yesterday as uh, working towards perfection. There's things that the budget that I don't like. I had a long conversation last night with a hospital group that's not real happy about a couple of things in here and those are the kinds of things that we'll still have to look at. But I can tell you that this is an extraordinary budget for an extraordinary period of time in our history. I appreciate the vote yesterday. I appreciate each one of you for the thought that you put into this and your vote. It's a long document. There's a lot of information in there. I've gotten a lot of questions about some of the provisions, but I would again encourage you to do what's right for the people of north Carolina, recognizing that may not be perfect. But overall it's an extraordinary document. This extraordinary work. We've had extraordinary staff that put enormous amount of time to guide us through these last several months and I'm quite frankly, very proud to be here today to cast a vote for this budget to help the people of my district, my county in my state and I hope you will join with me again today and pushing the yes vote. Wouldn't it be extraordinary again if we had a unanimous vote, a unanimous vote overlooking some of the concerns you might have and vote for this budget and let's move on and get this money out. We're already late. We need to get this money out to the people that need it. So my challenge to you is let's make this as close if not unanimous as we can and move on and be proud to be citizens of this great state of north Carolina. Thank you For what purpose does the lady from weight represented Badcock Rice to debate the Bill. Lady has four. Thank you. MR Speaker colleagues. I'd like to echo a bit of what represented lambert has said and just remind us of what I thought were the stirring comments of leader Reeves yesterday. The bill before us. This budget is a historic work of bipartisan compromise. It's the result of hard work of the members who all members who had input on it, the staff that worked so hard on it and the thoughtfulness of every member in this chamber who was going to vote on it. I would ask you to vote your conscience on this bill. I intend to vote yes and would urge many members to do the same. Thank you. Members of Chair is gonna give the majority leader of the final debate. Are there any other members who wish to debate the bill? If not the jump from way majority Leader Representative has recognized the debate to build. Thank you. Mr Speaker and members. Um it's it's a good day for our state and I was excited coming up here this morning with a strong vote that we had yesterday and the hard work that has been done. Uh I want to repeat some of the thank you's and add a little more to it. First of all, none of us would be here today voting on this budget if it wasn't for our partisan staff, the speaker's staff, the appropriations chair, staff, your staff and all the folks sitting on that back road with our central staff that have worked for the last 11 months preparing this document for its final vote today. Um Their hard work has not gonna gonna notice the late nights, early mornings. Uh thank you for what you do. A lot of people do not know the work that you put in, but we, as members get to see you day in and day out in the hard work you do for the citizens of the state. I want to thank our appropriation chairs. Um, I've been in that room, I know what it's like to sit there, not as long as you have, but for days on, days from morning to night eating wonderful healthy food and staring at the window as people are walking by enjoying life and you're stuck there wishing you could get this done, but thank you for your work and the work that you did to make this happen. I also want to thank the nine Democrat members that voted on the house budget that joined us and making sure, that this budget continue to get worked on, continue to get better and became the strong bipartisan budget that you see before us. And I also want to thank my friend and colleague, representative robert reaves the democratic leader robert has always from day one be willing to work with both sides of the aisle and somehow has navigated both sides of this owl, both sides of the aisle in the other chamber in conjunction with the governor's office to put forth a good budget for the state of decline. I want to thank him for his always willingness to find ways to make things happen for our state members. I get a chance to travel to state this weekend, my wife and I were up and uh bobby Henning's district and went out to Corolla and looked at the horses and and came back and as I was driving through um I've never been to Elizabeth City State University and I said, well let's take a detour and go and see what's going on because I knew about a lot of the, the stuff that we were working on there and I actually was on the phone with the speaker at the time as I was driving through and we were talking about the funding in this budget, not just for our entire university system but for smaller schools like Elizabeth City State University, which is gonna be completely transformed and not just to the university, but for the community hall and what amazing things this budget is doing for our community colleges in our schools all across the state. And then I got to thinking about our state employees are hardworking state employees that didn't get a day off during the pandemic. Some work from home, some work on the front lines day in and day out to making sure that the services of our citizens were met. The raises in there for the end of raising their for our teachers. And then I looked at our instructional personnel are bus drivers, are cafeteria workers are teacher assistance and what we're doing this budget actually changes lives for the better. And as you're driving through the state, you get a chance to go into little communities, one that that you've heard a number of times in my district. O little town Eureka. But with the water and sewer infrastructure in this budget, we're actually going to give these small communities an opportunity to have new water and sewer lines. Some of these, some of these have not been replaced since the 20s and 30 all across the state. Little towns like Eureka like Princeton and so forth and so on are gonna have opportunities to recruit businesses industry simply because they now have the capacity to be able to do that with water and sewer infrastructure. This body has made it a mission since I've been here to make sure that our state has broadband capabilities From the mountains to the coast. This budget continues. That effort to make sure that all 100 counties on that mission to be broadband capable, which is something that every other state is envious of. You've helped do that. We talk about health care, there's many issues with health care in this budget, but one is near and dear to me that I've had the chance to argue and debate and file bills over for many years is actually going to become a reality. If you believe in the, the opportunities that we have to really grow in the rural spaces with real health care, there is nothing bigger to access to care in rural north Carolina than a new brody school of Medicine. Many representatives have gone and come have fought for this and the $214 million that's gonna go in to create a new brody school of Medicine is gonna help put rural health care providers in all 100 counties in the state is transformative. Not just to eastern north Carolina but to all of north Carolina. And then we sit here a few months back and there's gold doors open and it was one of the most memorable moments I've had on this floor when we saw our wounded warriors are veterans come walking in to celebrate the alive day that were missing limbs have come back from combat and what we have done for veterans in this budget. Not just a military tax exemption, but the fact that we now have a program that expands all across the state to not just address the physical star scars but the middle scars to ensure that no veteran is left behind. We truly can stand on this floor and say that we are the most military friendly state in this country. Ladies and gentlemen, those are just some of the few highlights in this budget. There's something a few reasons why this budget and the spending plan is really good for the citizens of this state. And I ask every single one of you to vote green, thank you. Question for the House is the adoption of the motion to adopt the conference report on its third reading for Senate. Bill one oh five. Those in favor will vote either as opposed to vote no cork open the vote represented Harrison, no Cork will lock the machine and record the vote 101 having voted in the affirmative and 10 to the negative. The conference report to send about 105 is adopted on its third reading and the Senate will be so notified. Senator burger. Did you get that notice? Okay, thanks for being with us today by the way, House Bill 2 59 The Corporal Reed Representative Kidwell carol hall McNeil in Cleveland Hospital to 59 are built to the entire election Integrity Act during some of Nokelainen ax jump from both represented well recognized to briefly debate the bill. Thank you. MR Speaker. Uh this bills in my portion of it anyway, I think uh Representative Cleveland has a little more length on uh on some information in this as well. But uh this bill seeks to uh clean up and address some of the issues that are citizens in north Carolina have I think justifiably so in a concern that there may be computer access from other countries getting into some of our voting equipment in the United States. So we're just trying on on part one of this bill to make sure that the voting machines in north Carolina are protected as much as possible by having them manufactured and the software from the United States owned businesses and manufactured here in the United States. With that Representative Cleveland may want to address section two of the bill and beyond jumping from monster represented Cleveland recognized as well. To briefly debate to bill. Thank you Mr Speaker. And Section two of the Bill. Uh we're laying out the qualifications to be a juror in the state. Section three and 4 will require the administrative officer courts to establish a form for the excuses from jury duty. So it's consistent across the state and it also gives the chief judge the authority to delegate to his clerk or Superior Court to approve or disapprove requests for jury service. Section five establishes a process for the clerk of superior court to retain the personal information of each person who request to be excused and it's not qualified to serve as that. You're along with the reason for the request that have to maintain the records with the remainder of the biennium. The information retained by the clerk is not a public record. Section five of the bill would require the clerk of Superior Court two to record the personal information and the reason for disqualification and data disqualification if a person disqualified from jury duty, if they claimed not to be a citizen of the United States, the clerk would be required to report this information electronically to the State Board of Elections quarterly. The state board would be required to conduct efforts to remove names from the list of registered voters from this information. The records retained by the state board would be public records except for personal identifying information protected by state and federal law. The state board will be required to retain the records for four years. Section six establishes a process for removal of non citizens excuse from jury duty on the basis from the removing from the voter registration rules from the their comments that they were not a citizen. Section six also would require the State board to, if they determine a prospective juror voted prior to obtaining citizenship. They would have to refer to furnish the district attorney in the county of the individual a copy of their investigation for prosecution in violation. Section seven directs the administrative office of the courts to adopt rules to implement the provisions of the act. And section eight Requested a post election audits beginning in October of 2019. The state board is required to prepare a report of a post election audit and submit the report to the elections oversight committee and the general government oversight committee and Mr. Speaker that is what's in the building. Further discussion, further debate. If not the question for the house, I'll go ahead and take uh lady from weight resident dollars. This debate the bill, Yes. It's actually to ask the bill's sponsor a question which one representing Cleveland? Representative Cleveland represent Cleveland Germany. Oh yeah heels. Representative Cleveland, is there a fiscal note to this bill? There seems to be a lot of concern among the lawyers over here that this is going to cost a lot of money and put undue burden on the clerks of court as well as the court system. So Mr. Speaker turn, but I can answer. Let me answer the question on that represented all that. There was no fiscal note on it. There's not one required, it's not shown as a financial impact according to the attorneys. There would be a notation gets put on the bill. So looks like according what we're seeing. Not a not a fit, not a known fiscal impact. Okay, I would like to defer to my colleague over here too. Well, no, okay, sorry, let me just debate the bill for a minute. He has for debate the bill where chair is hoping that our debate may be brief on these bills. I'm hoping In my limited knowledge of the court system. After working for 18 years in the court system and working with the court system, this seems to be a gracious, plenty of work to add on to some already overworked folks. Um, I realized that there is a school of thought that thinks that this is just a little bit of work and it won't be, it won't be anything to add it to. But I also know that there is the courts are overworked right now standing in line and waiting just to get information about your case can take hours. So I would, I would ask that you guys vote no on this bill and we go back to the drawing table and make sure that everyone in the state of north Carolina meaning everybody in a courthouse. The clerk, the clerks are happy and willing to undertake this work. For what purpose of the lady from Durham represented Maury Rise, thank you to debate the bill. Lady has a four. Thank you Ladies and gentlemen, the title of this bill is erroneously named election integrity act, which infers that we don't have election integrity in our process today and I strongly disagree with that. I think section one of the bill to require everything american made also infers that any chip, any part of any election machine scanner, anything if it is made out of the country is a corrupted piece of uh electronics or chips. S and s uses other parts that come from abroad in our election machines. Not once has anything been shown to corrupt the machines or corrupt the vote. That section is unnecessary, but basically, and I agree with Representative doll, what we're doing is asking the courts to now become another arm of election integrity to report to the board of election anytime a juror excuse comes in where someone has marked not a citizen requiring a clerk to research that to send that information to the board of election. The thing is juror lists are created every other year. And where did jury list come from? They come from the voter registration. They already come from voter registration. They also come from the DMV where everyone has to have a social security number and be a citizen. This entire bill is saying to our citizens, we don't have election integrity in this state. It is a bill in search of a problem. It is unnecessary. I urge you to vote no. What purpose jump from Durham represented Hawkins Rice to debate bill. Gentlemen has the floor to debate bill, I'd like to thank my colleagues for their comments and for the concern for the represented Cleveland kid will about election integrity. I think we all we all care about election integrity but the this bill does something just a little different uh actually helps to undermine people's faith and democracy. I wanted to give just a few facts uh that actually come from the board of elections about what they do to ensure that we actually have security and integrity in our elections. So first um paper ballots under state law, all voting systems used in north Carolina must be must use paper ballots producing a paper trail that can be audited. This was written prior just prior to 2020 certified voting systems. All voting machines used in north Carolina are certified by the U. S. Election Assistance Commission. After testing by certified laboratories, there are also certified by the state board of Elections. After additional testing and all systems certified in north Carolina are certified used and audited in other states. Also related to audits after every election and before results are certified. The state and county boards of elections conduct audits designed to detect irregularities such as equipment tampering, ballot stuffing and vote machine or tabulation errors. Also for the logic and accuracy testing before every election. County boards of elections conduct logic and accuracy test on every machine that will be used to ensure proper coding of ballots and counting of votes for every contest on the ballot. And so with those facts, I hope that you will uh stand with us on this side as my colleague Representative Doll said, step back. Let's think through this and let's think about real ways. This seems like a um, uh, something that we're looking for a problem with this. Whereas our boards of elections, the state board of elections has done an absolutely incredible job and making sure that our elections are secure and fair, if not none of us would be here. And so, um, I wanted to just share those facts for everyone's uh, edification in case you did not know exactly what is already in place. And I believe that our elections are secure, that they do have integrity, but we have to be very diligent about making sure that we don't undermine people's faith in democracy. So I ask you to stand with us and vote No on this bill. Thank you. Mr. Speaker, further discussion further debate. If not the question for the House is the pastor's House bill 2 59 on second reading those in favor will vote, aye. Those opposed to vote no, the cork open the vote Harrison no represented shepherd on the floor core clock machine record the vote 61 having voted in the affirmative and 47 the negative House Bill 2 59 passed the second reading without objection. Be read a third time you're assembling not climbing next question for the House passage of House Bill 2 59 on third reading those in favor will say, aye, those opposed no, uh, appear to have it. now, I do have a House Bill 2 59 having passed third reading is ordered sent to the Senate by special messenger. Senate Bill 3 26th Cork agreed. Senators Daniels Newton and Heist. Senate Bill 3 26. A bill to be entitled election Day integrity act senator. No clima tact represent Hunter. How's the gentleman wish to be recorded on that previous vote? We just did. No. The gentleman be reporters haven't voted no on hospital to 59 2nd reading, the gentleman from Iredell represented Mills is recognized to debate the bill. Thank you Mr. Speaker members of the House. Good morning, Senate Bill 3 26. The Election Day integrity act is a straightforward bill that requires absentee melon ballots be received by county boards of elections on Election Day. It's not three days after, not nine days after, but on Election Day, Election Day is a date that voters know. Well, it's a date that's easy for voters to remember. Over half of the states presently have Election Day is the cut off date for their melon absentee ballots. I believe it's over 30 states. The objective of this bill is to provide certainty to election outcomes hopefully on election night or as soon as possible thereafter providing election results to voters in a more timely fashion. We'll build voter confidence in our elections in our elections process. The bill addresses the uncertainty many voters have about melon ballots coming in after Election day has passed by adjusting the date that absentee melon balance or do we will address many voters frustrations in the uncertainty that is created every day that passes after an election when there is no determined winner. We can improve voter confidence and that's exactly what this bill aims to do Now. The bill also calls for boards of elections to inform voters about absentee ballot deadlines so that they may plan accordingly. And it also requires the board to report one stop and absentee voting data more consistently more transparency about the number of outstanding ballots is a good thing. Voters deserve more information during the election. More transparency, not less. I urge you to vote Yes. This bill, let's point the majority of other states by establishing election day, the easy day to remember as the deadline from Ellen ballot speaker for what purpose jump from Cumberland represent the Richardsons. Bill sponsored question represent mills jumping yield for a question. Yes Sir. Fields, does this um thank you for yielding. Is this um does this legislation apply to service personnel? No sir, this is your regular melon absentee ballots. It's not overseas military voters or military ballots. Does it apply to spouses of military personnel? It applies to regular melon ballots. So people who would normally request a regular mail in ballot, not an overseas ballot, not a military ballots. Does it apply. Do you know if it applies to the spouses and uh and Children that are 18, you know, that are overseas with a military, it would have no, it would not apply to overseas ballots. Does it apply to civil service workers that are overseas? It does not apply to have a vote or two overseas ballots. Thank you. For what purpose? The general from Mecklenburg represented alexander rise. Mhm. To debate the bill, Johnson has four, I have spent a considerable part of my life uh since I was about nine years of age engaged in voter registration and motivational activities, First getting older folks to get out and vote, and then later on dealing with my contemporaries, um I've been involved in partisan and nonpartisan activities and throughout that uh time frame, uh I have noticed a consistent deterioration in the Postal service. Uh the law that we have on the books right now by allowing folks to have the ballots postmarked on Election Day, and then allowing a period of time for them to be received by the board of election, recognizes this deterioration, and also recognizes the fact that some folks may not make up their minds until Election Day, but because of their circumstances, uh it may be more convenient for them to uh use the Postal service, uh then uh to try to get a ballot uh in by a time certain on on election day. Uh there's a difference between folk who who vote using the mails, uh and folk who go in person to vote the measure before us, uh, does not adequately represent or recognize that difference. The other thing is I've noticed in the argumentation a couple of times, it was mentioned that a number of other states do it this way, um, as it's being purported to be done in this bill. And I kind of scratched my head because I I began to wonder since when is north Carolina paid much attention to what other states would do. Um, you know, we, we kind of selectively decide that we're gonna follow other states. I mean, a classic example would be in uh, legalization of marijuana. Whole bunch of states have done that, but, you know, we haven't followed them. Mr speaker. Uh, so, so if if we're not, I just gotta say that's the first that marijuana legalization and uh, the gentleman has four to continue. Go ahead. I want to see where this goes. Well, I could say that some folks are smoking some stuff, but I'm not gonna say that. Uh, I urge you, I urge you to seriously not tamper with something that's not broken to uh, allow citizens who legitimately at the last minute make up their minds to drop that absentee ballot into uh, post box to be able to do it, uh, knowing that their ballot will have a chance to arrive in time to be counted. And lastly, the last time I was looking at statistics, the way we do things now actually benefits republicans more than it does democrats. So it's kind of odd for me as a lifelong democrat to be arguing to figure out how to get republican votes counted legitimately that this is just something odd uh, about that. Uh, in any way, please join me in voting against this measure. For what purpose does the gentleman from weight represent? John rise to debate the bill. Gentlemen has it for. Thank you. Mr. Speaker members of current law. The three day period uh, grace period allows a safety valve, provides a safety valve to accommodate the conscientious voter who, uh, follows all the rules, puts his ballot or her ballot in the mail an appropriate time. And for one reason or another, it does not arrive at the, at the election board on the date of election. That's just a common sense, accommodation to reality. I don't know what your experience with the Postal service has been. I had recently an experience, uh, campaign card that we all mail out. I may my campaign mailed out in the 2020 election on november. I'm sorry, september september the eighth, September 8 2020 in the post office box. We used for the campaign. I received this uh card apparently miss addressed On July 7, 2021. All right. We we don't need to eliminate this safety valve because we don't like three day period or because we're upset about some longer period that may have been, uh, may have been imposed in a recent election. My mother used to use the expression throw out the baby with the Bathwater. That's essentially what this bill is doing. It's reacting to a three or 10 day period to receive ballots and throwing the baby out with the Bathwater and said, we're not going to have any safety valve. I ask your members don't throw the baby out with the Bathwater. Let's let's vote no on this bill. Thank you very much. What purpose the way from you have never represented but will rise to debate the bill Mr Speaker Lady has four uh ladies and gentlemen, these election bills we see today are not the product of north Carolina legislating. They come to you fresh off the press from the american Legislative exchange council known as alec. These bills are templates being trotted out across the country to restrict access to the polls, not by the way with direct or courageous frontal attacks, but with more insidious, subtle glancing blows all under the guise of protecting elections. You know, these are the kind of restrictions designed to stop just short of driving the voters out into the streets in protest, but robust enough to harvest votes off the margins where elections tend to be won and lost. So whether it is cross referencing disqualified, jurors or moving the acceptance date of absentee ballots. The goal is the same to make it harder for people that are traditionally on balance more likely to vote as democrats. So that's the game plan. Let's just get it out there. That's what we're talking about here and all of this language about manufacturing voting machines in America and audits and record keeping and integrity. Those are all dog whistles designed to imply that these things are necessary in the first place to imply that there are urgent, urgent pervasive problems here with the way we have been conducting elections for generations. It's just not true and we all know it. So these bills are an attempt to gaslight the public in the absence of any proof of election impropriety in north Carolina or anywhere else in this country for that matter. With perhaps the exception of McCray Dallas, our own native son Dallas Mcrae, whatever his name is, what you're doing is wrong because you are perpetuating a false narrative of all of the counts and the recounts and the audits and the hoopla across this country. What was found virtually nothing. So we need to stop the charade when you intentionally attempt to chill participation in elections by undermining voter confidence with information that is flatly wrong. You are tearing at the fabric of our democracy and we know, and I think we would all believe that voting is the hallmark of any democracy is the foundation. It's the basis upon all at what everything else depends. And you know, I find it so interesting as americans. We we send emissaries to fledgling democracies around the globe. We do it all the time to try to instill our principles are guiding principles and then we remind them of the sanctity of the vote. We teach them that every vote must be equal, that every voice matters and that disenfranchising voters is the first step toward the decline of any democracy. We tell them that democracies are fragile and we stress how the power must always remain in the hands of the people. These are lessons that we desperately need to revisit upon ourselves and soon and maybe Abraham Lincoln said it the best America will never be destroyed from the outside. But if we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves. Thank you Mr. Speaker for what purpose does the lady from Orange represent Vince go rise to debate the bill. Lady has it for Thank you. Mr Speaker. At the very least this bill needs to be changed to require the post date the data bill that ballot is mailed to be the measure because not all post is just not all ballot's going at the same time. They don't take some Some times people get their meal in three days, Sometimes it's in five days, sometimes it's a week. So when when when can I mail my ballot? I can mail my back. So the bill needs to be changed so that the ballot needs to be postmarked by a certain date. And I urge you to vote no. Until that changes made question for the house passage of Senate Bill 3 26 on second reading those in favor will vote either as opposed to vote no. The cork open the vote. Willis I represented Harrison Harrison. No cork will lock the machine and record the votes 62 having voted in the affirmative and 48 the negative. Senate bill 3 26 passed the second reading without objection will be read a third time. No climate question for the House is the passage of Senate Bill 3 26 on third reading those in favor will say, aye. Those opposed No eyes appear to have it. I do have it. Senate bill 3 26 having passed third reading we sent to the Senate by special messenger. Actually strike that that will be ordered enrolled and sent to the governor by special messenger. Uh, Senate Bill 7 25 The coral reef Senators Highest Daniel and Newton, Senate Bill 7 25. A bill to be in had in titled prohibit private money in election administration general nor climb to enact represent mills with the gentleman like to take care of the amendment. First of all. Yes, sir. That's generally recognized the fourth amendment parker rate represented. Mills moved him in the bill on page one line 21 by deleting july 1st 2023 substituting july 1st 2022 Germans recognized to debate the amendment. Thank you Mr Speaker. Ladies and gentlemen, the amendment simply changes of the day from july 1st 23 to july 1st 22. I urge your support, Thank you for the debate or discussion on the amendment. If not those in favor of the amendment will say, aye, I suppose now independent. The chair of the eyes have it now as you have the amendments adopted, represented Mills with the german like to debate the bill or I represented johnson jumped from Pope presented johnson is recognized to debate the bill. Thank you Mr Speaker. This bill simply says virtually what the title does. It just prohibits, um, when I say in the sense of private money, uh, money coming in from outside the board of elections, uh, for the purpose of administering elections. You know, uh, I think there is a sense that when that money is coming in, I think that deteriorates the, the integrity and if they need money, that should happen through the county's. So prior to this, I was a county commissioner. If the board of elections needed money to run elections, they would come to us with an appropriation request. And I think that's how it should be done. Not these outside entities. Um, I'd appreciate your support. What purpose does the lady from weight represented all rise. Question for the bill, sponsor representing johnson jump in europe. I'll certainly do so it was my understanding that the money came into the state board of elections and then was disseminated to the counties so that, that money was actually coming to the counties through another venue. It was also my understanding that that money was used for protective um, equipment due to the pandemic to make sure that people felt safe while voting. Is that untrue? Am I, I can't speak to what the county's used the money for. Exactly, I can't speak exactly what the county's used the money for. Uh, but I will say if they needed money for that protective equipment and to run the elections safely in their eyes, um, there's a way to do that. It's going to the county Board of Commissioners asking for the appropriation, um, at the state board of Elections that would be coming to us asking for that appropriation. Um, But the, to my understanding and the research, I've done, the LLC, that's been prominently funneling this money in North Carolina was filed uh, very much prior to the pandemic. I think it was either 2015 or 2017. Um, so I, I don't think that was the original intent of it. Um, but if they need that money to conduct elections safely, I would just humbly suggest they ask for that appropriation to do so for the discussion for the debate. For what purpose away from white residents all rise. I'd like to debate the bill, police lady has for the debate. The bill. So I've spent the last two days furious stomach and not angry and I hesitate to show this emotion here because when I get angry or mad I cry and people see that as weakness. I tend to see it as a strength because I have held in those tears in order to find compromise and find solutions and not to create problems. But I've pretty much reached my limit today and I want you to know when I'm angry. The reason I feel this way is I feel shamed. I feel shame for this house and how we are going about the people's business. We have so many good opportunities to work together just yesterday and today. We had a great bipartisan vote and we need to take these election bills back to the drafting tape, work together and beg north Carolina a leader in X in election law, not a follower. These election bills are based on unfounded fears that elections are being stolen or that there's fraud in our elections. To further my point yesterday and rules, I heard that these election laws are needed due to the perception and the suspicion that folks have guys, people have those fears only because these people, these bills keep appearing across the state. Can we just vote now? Nobody was underhandedly trying to sway any election. Folks were trying to make sure people were safe regardless of how you feel about this pandemic. People lost their lives, they died. Now I'm sorry. I don't think people should be asked to die to vote. Although I am willing to die on this hill to make sure that everybody can vote. I don't want just democrats to vote. I want everybody to have a voice. If they're eligible to vote in the state of north Carolina, then they should be able to vote period if you lose, you lose, if you win, you win. I didn't sign up for this election because I thought I could win. Quite honestly, I was so angry at the Democratic Party after I won by primary because they wouldn't offer me any support. And they were like, well, you got it in the bag. I was like, what are y'all talking about? Because I feel like every election you need to be put your best foot forward. And I still until the night of the election and I actually won. I still didn't believe I was going to win. Because I I think that people make their minds up and they vote their conscience and I'm here to tell you, I vote my conscience and I will admit that I have actually voted for a republican before because I voted my conscience. So I don't trust that everybody is going to vote one way or another and I'm getting in the weeds here. But I just cannot express clearly enough how we have got to stop basing decisions and bills and laws on fears, on suspicions, on feelings. We need to base them on facts on law. We need to look at what is actually happening and what is actually happening is that people are electing the people they want to office. For the most part, I'm not going to get into redistricting or anything like that, but we've got to stop, we've had such a good set, you know, we've had some good votes sure we've argued, but I see no sense in continuing or perpetuating this lot. Thank you. Please vote no. For what purpose the jumper from Cumberland represented Richardson rise To debate this Bill. German has four members. I've got a modest suggestion. Everybody knows what's going to happen. You're gonna you're gonna push these bills through, the Governor's gonna veto them and then we're gonna be using as election fodder to shoot at each other. Let's don't do that. We just did an historic thing here, a very good thing with this bipartisan budget. If we have election law issues, let's get a bipartisan committee together and let's fix it. But let's don't do use this stuff to shoot at one another and let's don't do this to win elections, let's fix it. If we really want to have if we're concerned about the security of our elections. If we really sincere about that. Let's use this model we just did with the budget form a bipartisan committee and genuinely sit down and talk and listen to each other and fix it. But what we're doing now is not helpful. It is not going to bring north Carolina together and right now this country needs us to come together like no other time in our history, don't do this, let's fix this if we really want to, but let's do not use it as election Cannon fodder. Thank you. Question for what purpose jump from Durham represent Hawkins rest uh, to briefly debate the bill german hazard for. Um, I just want to add, um, I don't want to thank my colleague Representative Doll for her passionate pleased to do better. Um, and my colleague who also has clearly outlined what on the results of this bill will be, and I think a lot of you have heard me talk about the fact that I believe deeply in democracy, it is the bedrock of who we are is what makes America the greatest country on the face of the earth. And the bedrock is absolutely ensuring that people understand and have faith in what we do in our elections. And so I want to make sure that you understand this really specifically from of the perspective of a voter and african american voters and voters like me who are deeply impacted by the changes in elections. And so the changes in laws sometimes have disparaging impacts in the way that they are put forth, because they seem targeted in many ways, why is this bill necessary, who is it helping? And who is it hurting? Are the things that you absolutely have to ask yourself when you're putting those things forward? Does it empower people or does it hurt people? And again push them away from the process that we all hold dear. And the reason why we're sitting in our seats and so again, not to speak too long to this particular piece, but when we're asking, we're asking folks um to to get a ballot in at a time, that's just not um I think reasonable, um when it's a time that we can make sure that we give everyone the opportunity to cast their ballot in as many ways as possible. We need to do those things. People are looking at us, we're the ninth largest state in the country. We are official swing state. So what we do matters not just to the people here, but also the people um that are around the country looking at the great state of north Carolina. And so I just plead with you that we we vote no on this bill. We think long and hard about what we want to be in His Representative doll said very clearly how north Carolina can be a leader in elections in voting rights in election law. So join us vote no thank you. Mr Speaker. What purpose jumper from Canberra represent Pittman Rice speak on the bill, johnson has four, I think. Mr Speaker. There seems to be a question being raised here as to whether there's any fraud going on. Uh, just speaking for myself, we took a look after last year's election and we found a bunch of fraud committed against me in the election. Now I don't begin to assume that only democrats commit fraud. I'm sure there's probably some republicans to do that too. Wouldn't be surprised. Um, but to say that we don't need to try to do everything we can to stop. It is missing the point. It is happening. And, uh, some of the newer folks wouldn't remember me saying this. Maybe everybody else has forgotten it. So I'll say it again. It's like this. You don't think there's any fraud around. Um, it's like this guy is walking down the road one day and he meets a friend who's walking along beating two sticks together and the guy says, what's up with the sticks? What are you doing? He said it keeps tigers away. He said there's no tigers around here. He said, you see how well it works. Uh, there is fraud maybe on both sides. I know it because I know what fraud was committed against me. And so I think we do need to take some efforts like this to try to curtail it. I think it's worth it. Please vote yes for our purposes jump from Pope presented johnson Rise, speak to a bill a second time, summons, recognized to briefly debate the bill a second time. Thank you. Mr Speaker. And just to kind of reiterate what the bill actually does is prevent, uh, increase public confidence in our elections by uh, prohibiting these, these private entities, dark money groups and outside corporations being able to give money straight the boards of elections. That's all the bill does. Very simple one page. I appreciate your support. Thank you. Question for the house passage of Senate Bill 7 25 on second reading those in favor will vote, aye. Those opposed vote no cork weapon to vote Harrison no, represented off representative wished about cork a lot and she recorded vote 63 having voted in the affirmative 48. The negative. Senate Bill 7 25 passed the second reading objection be read a third time question for the House passage of Senate Bill 7 25 on third reading those in favor will say, aye, I suppose. No. And you pin the chair of the eyes have it. You guys do have it. Senate Bill 7 25 having passed its third reading, sort of return to the Senate by special messenger members. We do have one of the bill, but the chair wants to take care of a couple of quick recognitions of members of the guests that we have with us here today. First off on, on motion of uh represented Goodwin of Chengguan county chairs. Happy to extend the courtesy of the gallery too. The retired city manager for the town of Eadington, who was there for 40 years and Marie Knighton and also her replacement Corey Goode and who's here with her. Would you all please stand so we could welcome you. They're still here. Oh here on the left. Good to see you guys here today. And Mr cork on that previous bill, chair further directs that bill being gross prior to being sent to the Senate by special messenger. Also, we have a we have a group of of students here with us uh from Huntersville. So on motion of the gentleman from Mecklenburg represented Bradford, the chair is happy to extend the courtesy of the gallery to members of the student leadership council at Southlake christian Academy and Hunters Huntersville. They are here visiting for the day to learn more about north Carolina. State government history. They're here on the right. Wanna thank you for being here with us today And to the students she represented is represented Bradford right here for 400 bills. So, uh and then I do want to quickly recognize representative represented handing from Currituck. The gentleman has a representative statement that will be read upon adjournment and spread across the journal today, but I do want to recognize them for a very special point of personal privilege. Thank you. Mr Speaker today. I rise to honor a truly remarkable citizen that devoted her entire life to making her community better. MS Virginia till it. She was born in Dare county north Carolina where she attended Roanoke High School and graduated in 1959. She moved away for a short period of time returning home with the love of her community in her heart, she pursued an education at Elizabeth City State University where she graduated with a bachelor of Science degree in education MS Virginia and her husband William Snooks till it. You know, there's a good story behind that nickname. A commercial fisherman were later blessed to become the parents of johnny and Michael till it. And they became her driving force in life. They have the strong love for their community and public service. She did. I know she was incredibly proud of both of you Virginia joined uh Haven Creek Missionary baptist church and remained a member until her death. She also served as deaconess there until she, her health began to decline. MS Virginia Virginia's community involvement began with the Dare County Board of Education where she served as both chair and Vice Chair during her 20 years roanoke island head start Assistant Dean and coordinator of continuing education of the album Oral College of the album Oral Derek County Board of Commissioners, Roanoke island Freedom Colony and Elizabeth City State University Board of Trustees. One of her proudest accomplishments to the community was the completion of the Dare County Community center located in Roanoke island, which we will be named in her honor. MS Virginia received numerous recognitions for her service and always remained humbled by them. A few. She held dear to her heart were in 2006 she was honored by the Governor of North Carolina with the prestigious Order of the Longleaf Pine Award. 2006. She was named Citizen of the Year, The Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce. In 2015 she was named outstanding Community Citizen of the Year. In 2015 she was named Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year. In 2021 she was honored by the North Carolina Black Alliance Trailblazer Award recipient for her dedication to community and servant leadership for many years. Mr didn't tell. It was a strong, proud woman. She exemplified what it meant to be a community service person. Her love of her family, education in her community have made Dare County a better place to live, work and raise a family. I'm truly blessed to have got to know Miss Virginia. She always had a kind word for me and words of encouragement. Ah sometimes you know you kind of felt like she was encouraging but she was also warning you to do the right thing. She was very good at it and very convincing. Um please keep her family in our community in your hearts and prayers as uh we remember one of the truly best MR speaker and members. I commend this resolution to you. Thank you. Jump from Chatham representatives is recognized to speak to a point of personal privilege. Thank you Mr Speaker and I also would like to have an opportunity to talk about Miss Virginia Tilley. Um I had a chance to meet Miss till it once I got in the office here because she was close friends to one of the people I'm closest to in this chamber. And no, that's not Amos quick, I love Amos but I've got a one of my family members Valerie for she who did serve in this chamber and it's also a senator next door and everything that center for. She told me about her as we were approaching and then all that she's had to say about her since that time I saw in that meeting. She had a wonderful smile, a pleasant personality and you could clearly tell that she was somebody who cared about serving people and helping people and had kind words to say she was encouraging and very humble and I know that when I talked to senator for she they had had a chance to know each other through being on the board of Education together uh through being county commissioners together and had this very similar career paths. And some of the things that MS. Till it also did along with all the accomplishments that you've already heard is that she had a chance to help get open professional arts building for the community college that she had spent so much time at. Um and one of our other accomplishments was helping kickstart the new horizons program for folks with substance abuse in rural areas, which something that meant a lot tour but as long as she could, as hard as she could, she served everybody in that county to the best of her ability. And I think one of the greatest testaments that you can have is that when you finished your service, not only in public service but here on this earth that people remember you for all the kind things that you did for them. There are many people who have stories just like representative handing about their interactions with her about her kindness and her consideration. And I think all of us would be lucky to have people think of us and remember us as the dubious till it. And I do commend this resolution to you gentlemen from Taiwan represented Goodwin's recognize speak to a point of personal privilege to speak on miss till it john it's good to see you all up there today. I'm sorry for the circumstances you're under. I met MS till it and I called him Miss till it all the time. I met her when I was commissioner enjoying kinda and she was commissioner and they're kinda so we had a lot of meetings together never now and then she dressed me down and tell me what I should say and what I should do or she would say if I was you, I wouldn't say that again. And I said, I said MS taylor, you're not saying anything, she said, I know when to keep my mouth shut, I don't know whether johnny jochen confirmed that or not. But when I worked during the day, I kind of, when I was the chair of the Director, the Fair division. Before that, I worked for McCord Governor McCrory as his eastern regional director. Uh try to get the governor to leave new york and come down and help inspect Oregon inlet bridge because it was about to fall down. And it was rated as the number one, the poorest, troublesome bridge in the country. And the pilots were not touching the sand and miss till it was scared to death to go out there. She had heard all the stories that the fisherman said about the bridge. So the governor went down miss till it wanted to be involved. It was wind blowing that day. Ah everybody's hand closed blowing all up. And MS taylor said, Ed, I can't get out of the car. I said, well I'll help you. She said not that way, I'm not getting out of the car. Uh I don't like water and I don't like wind. And it blew me over the bridge. I said, miss telling I hold onto you. She said okay. So I got out of the car and we walked back far as I'm here to sam now and she stops it this far enough. And I said, look, it's not gusting that much now. She said, well it's not. I said, I don't want you to walk over here with the governor is so you can look over that side. I'm not looking over that side. She got back far from here to you and stops it. I can see over there. But I talked her into going over there and just look and she went in the car and she went and got in the car, stayed in at the rest of the time and I got the governor come, come over there and say Miss till it, would you like for me to help you out? She said no. And he laughed cause I've already briefed him that she was not being offensive to her. But every time I saw Miss till it, no matter where it was, oh I saw johnny, we always had a Miss Tilly joke or laugh to share with each other. I think she was a special lady jumping from Vance represent garrison recognize speak to a point of personal privilege. Thank you. Mr Speaker. Um I also would like to speak about mrs Virginia till uh frankly, I'm startled. I really was not aware that she had passed. I met her uh it's a county commissioner uh and she was an outstanding lady. Very very concerned and uh about her county, her constituents and people all across the state quite frankly, and I would always ask johnny and how his mother was doing. And he would always tell me. And so I, my condolences to the family. She was a wonderful person, a tremendous role model? Great citizen. Thank you. Members uh, on the motion of represented handing and frank get a motion of all members of the House. The chair would like to extend the courtesy of the gallery to johnny and Michael Tiller who are here with us today along with my Attila and her brother Eddie Simmons. Would you all please stand? We want to welcome you and thanks for being with us today. Yeah. Yeah. Mhm And johnny, let me say, we see you here all the time and we're glad to do that. And I know your mom's looking down, very proud of every member of your family, what you all done how you have contributed to your community and certainly the years of service that she gave their to the community on the outer banks is something that will last a lifetime of achievement and and benefits for so many folks. So once again, thank you for being here today. Thank you for sharing your time with us and please know that you and your family will continue remain in our thoughts and prayers. So thanks for being with us today. Members. We do have one final vote. And then after that we'll chair will give an update on where we are schedule wise, uh, Senate Bill 4 70 the corporate greed Senator, johnson and heist Senate bill for 70 a bill to be entitled abC technical and other changes general. Some of north china and acts representing did you want to do the amendment first or debate the bill first this up. Cheryl extended whichever one the general which is to debate the build and send for the amendment. Gentlemen has four to debate the bill. Thank you. Mr Speaker members of the House this is a technical corrections bill brought forward by the Committee on alcoholic beverage control. Most of the languages clarifying and conforming. There are a handful of modest policy changes. I know this has been discussed thoroughly in both caucuses and I'm not aware of any objections. Mr Speaker I'd like to send for the amendment Germans recognized them. Fourth amendment corporal reed. Representative market moves them in the bill. On page four, line 51 through page five, line six by rewriting the lines three Gentlemen has the forward to debate the amendment. Thank Mr Speaker members. The commission had requested exemption for rulemaking in two particular areas. One regarding product selection and how they populate the diversity of products in our stores. The second exemption they requested was regarding pricing as it relates to the cost of those products to mark ups, development surcharges and development fees. We're granting the exemption to rulemaking strictly on the product selection aspect and we're allowing the cost issue to remain in place are encouraged adoption of the amendment. Further discussion for the debate. Not the question for the House is the adoption of mm and a one those in favor will say aye, I suppose now you guys have it. The amendments adopted. We're now on the bill for the discussion further debate. If not the question for the house is the passage of Senate bill for 70 on the second reading those in favor will vote, aye. Those opposed vote no cork open to vote Harris and I representative john gentlemen like to vote the clerk will lock the machine record the vote 104 having voted in the affirmative and six and the negative Senate bill 4 70 passed the second reading without objection will be read a third time nor climate question for the House is the passage of Senate bill 4 70 on its third reading those in favor will say aye. As opposed no. Yeah, I have it sent a bill for 70 having passed third reading is ordered engrossed and sent to the Senate by Special Messenger chair makes the following committee appointments, representative offices appointed to following committees, appropriations, appropriations, transportation, transportation, health, homeland security and local government. And it will be so notified as well. Members we have reached the conclusion of the calendar. I just want to make a couple of observations. Ah just number one, I want to thank everyone for the hard work on the budget. The strong bipartisan support the fact that I think that we have passed a budget that is going to do a lot of good across the state, not just today, not just tomorrow for many, many years to come. Uh this legislature, I would submit has risen to the challenge when it's come to addressing issues on COVID-19 sometimes these are things that were divisive, but in the end we came to resolution as much as we could. Uh and on the front and on the funding side of it really funded a lot of priorities. When each of you go back home to your districts today, you will go back and be able to talk about how schools are going to be receiving more money, How are hardworking teachers and state employees are going to be recognized and thanks and thanks for the work they do every day. The money is gonna be put into expanding broadband, water, sewer improving roads, doing so many things that are important across the state. And I hope that during your time back home for thanksgiving that will have a chance to get out and talk to folks in the community and talk about the good work that everyone is here has done. I also do want to thank the body for what I thought was a very, a very appropriate debate on issues that could also be contentious. And I do think that during these times where a lot of folks yell and so forth. I think the kind of debate that we had today in the debate, we've had as a constructive reminder that we can always disagree without being disagreeable and at the end of the day that the hallmark of this free republic is in fact the ability to express ourselves and have a disagreement, reach a resolution and then continue working together. Even in times when we don't necessarily see things I die. And I just want to personally thank each and every one of you for that, for that attitude and for that position that each of you bring to the table every day that you hear working tirelessly A little bit where we are right now on the, on the schedule, this of course is November the 18th. We will, we will not be, there will be two nonvoting sessions next week. Uh, but there will be no, no business taken care of so that everyone can be home with their families over thanksgiving and uh be back in your districts. The plan at this point would be that we come back on Monday the 29th. Well, that that is the plan right now to see if we can conclude business as much as possible to then go into some kind of extended uh multi week german at that point. Uh, it is possible however, that we may not be able to conclude things until The next week, which would be December the 6th. We're going to see if we can get there on the 29th just to be very candid that we're trying to get the budget tech correct build done some of those essential things that would need to be done so that we could we could try to wrap up hopefully that week. But again it might be the next week. My anticipation would be that if we do a journey that would be for probably a three week period since we need to be available to be brought in. If we need to deal with any litigation redistricting, etcetera. So uh those will be the those will be the things but the intent of course is to try to conclude our business at that time. So we'll keep everybody informed. But the thing you can plan on right now is that there will be no votes taken until the earliest of november the 29th and we will make sure representatives will make sure we notify you for your caucus of course represent bell the same for our Caucus and that folks will know that but just simply want to take a few minutes to thank each and every one of you and wish you and your family's happy thanksgiving with that notices and announcements. What purpose jumper from Brunswick represent viable rice. Okay Point of Personal Privilege German has four. I had a lot of questions about my seat mate Sarah stephens and I was kind of curious myself, you know she had trouble with her her arm her shoulder for quite a while. She just texted me back when I asked her about if she was okay and says she's quarantine so I can have armed surgery tomorrow. So keep saying your prayers. Thanks. What purpose jump from Durham represented Hawkins Rise Point of personal privilege. German has four. I would just like to um take the time to wish my oldest son a happy birthday. I'm good. What purpose jump from Iredell represent? McNeely rise. Mr Speaker. I have submitted a representative statement with the clerk and I asked that it be read in its entirety upon adjournment and spread across the journal and I'd like to be recognized to speak to that statement so ordered. And the gentleman has the floor to speak to a point of personal privilege. Thank you Mr Speaker. Uh Ladies and gentlemen, the second week in october every year Since 1846 there's been a camp meeting in harmony north Carolina. And I think Representative Cleveland, he's not here now. May have been at the very first one as a young chap but I'm not sure we're still trying to confirm that. But anyway, with that being said, They have met there for 175 years and I think that's very impressive and they have spread God's word and unity in the community every year. Every october since then. And I just hope that someday we can all be there and take a part in it. I've been at different ones but I haven't been there 175 consecutive. But I have made a few and it's a joyous time to worship our Lord and celebrate our celebrate, jesus our savior.