Ethics Bill Remains Top Priority For Legislators
Posted July 20, 2006 6:31 a.m. EDT
RALEIGH, N.C. — The state Legislature is winding down, and there is unfinished work on dozens of issues.
Some of the unresolved issues are stricter penalties for drunk drivers, a landfill moratorium in North Carolina's eastern counties, and legislation for tougher requirements on sex offenders. But the focus seems to be on one thing.
"Well the ethics bill should be concluded," said Sen. Marc Basnight, D-Dare. "Other than that, we can leave anything for another year."
"There are a lot of policy changes in that bill," said House Speaker Jim Black. "I want everyone to understand it thoroughly and know what they are voting on."
The Republican leader in the Senate, Phil Berger, has written both Black and Basnight, requesting that negotiations on the Ethics Lobby Legislation not be handled in secret.
"I think it's important for people to know who did what in terms of what's in the final bill," said Berger.
House and Senate negotiators are planning to work through the weekend in hopes of reaching a compromise on the ethics lobbying legislation, with the possibility of a floor vote as early as Wednesday.
With the ethics bill under consideration, Basnight asked lawmakers to make sure if they're not working next week, not to file for their $104 daily salary.