Old North State Report - June 9, 2017
Raleigh remains focused on the state budget. Appropriations Committee chairs from the House and Senate are hashing out differences between versions passed by both chambers. Those issues which can’t be resolved may be “kicked upstairs to the corner offices” by this weekend. That’s legislative parlance for the Senate President Pro Tem and the Speaker of the House, who hope to reach a compromise by early next week and hold floor votes by the end of the week.
That’s an optimistic schedule by traditional General Assembly standards, but leaders have been consistent in saying that they intend to adjourn the session by July 1st. Budget votes by the end of next week would allow two more weeks to clean up remaining bills and provide enough time to over-ride a potential veto of the budget by Governor Roy Cooper (who has ten calendar days to act on legislation). We shall see if this plays out as planned.
A full list of conferees is available here:
In other news…
In a one-sentence order, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that struck down 28 state House and Senate districts because they were illegal racial gerrymanders. The justices separately turned down an order by the same three-judge panel to hold special elections this fall in districts that must be redrawn by lawmakers. Governor Cooper called for the legislature to hold a special session to craft new districts so elections could be held this fall. Republican leaders rejected his efforts as the Governor has no constitutional role in redistricting. Odds are the legislature will call itself back into a special session later this year to draw new districts for the 2018 elections.
House Bill 589 (“Competitive Energy Solutions”) was approved with a strong bipartisan vote in the House this week. This is the first comprehensive rewrite of renewable energy policy considered by the legislature in a decade. The bill is a compromise between many varied stakeholders and now goes to the Senate for consideration. A summary is available here:
The House voted 65-64 to eliminate a state requirement that people obtain a permit to carry a concealed weapon. House Bill 746 (“Omnibus Gun Changes“) would allow any U.S. citizen 18 years old or over who legally owns a gun to carry it concealed without a permit anywhere he or she can carry it openly, except where prohibited. A summary is available here:
The articles published in this newsletter are intended only to provide general information on the subjects covered. The contents should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Readers should consult with legal counsel to obtain specific legal advice based on particular situations.