Aug 18, 2017

NCGA Week in Review

This week, the Governor took action on the four bills that were passed by the General Assembly when they held a one day session earlier this month, signing two into law and vetoing the other two. The legislature comes back to Raleigh today and will work next week to meet the September 1 court ordered redistricting deadline. Additionally, members of the legislature and the Governor have been discussing the discharge of the unregulated chemical GenX in the Cape Fear River and the appropriate course of action to remedy the situation.

From the Governor’s Desk

Gov. Cooper took action on the following bills this week:

Signed into Law

SB 407: Employee Misclassification/ IC Changes

SB 628: Various Changes to the Revenue Laws


HB 770: Various Clarifying Changes, which Gov. Cooper objected to due to two provisions: one that would allow a specific state employee to serve in a paid commission role while taking vacation pay from a state job, and a provision that reduces the number of gubernatorial appointments to the Medical Board.

SB 16: Regulatory Reform Act of 2017, which Gov. Cooper stated makes dangerous rollbacks to regulations protecting water quality.

Both HB 770 and SB 16 are eligible for reconsideration by the General Assembly during next week’s session.

To read more about these pieces of legislation, follow this link.

What’s Coming Up in NC Politics?

Redistricting Continues

The Joint Select Redistricting Committee will meet next Tuesday for a public hearing where the committee will have the opportunity to receive feedback from constituents at the General Assembly and seven remote sites across the state. Rep. David Lewis (R-Harnett), chair of the House Select Committee on Redistricting, stated that he expects the maps to be released by Sunday, with the Redistricting Committee voting on them next Thursday, followed by votes on the House floor next Friday and the following Monday. Once the House votes on the new maps, the Senate will vote on them. Per court order, new maps must be passed by September 1.

What about GenX?

Throughout the summer, Chemours, a chemical manufacturing company with a plant on the Cape Fear River has been releasing GenX, a chemical compound that is used to make items like Teflon, into the river. GenX is not regulated by the federal government and is a fairly recent chemical innovation, the health impacts of human exposure to the chemical remain unknown.

Last month, Gov. Cooper urged the federal Environmental Protection Agency to set limits for the contaminant in a letter and more recently called for action at the state level to address contamination, including additional appropriations to study and monitor GenX. In response to the Governor’s call-to-action, seven senators sent a letter to the Governor in which they requested him to answer a number of questions by August 14; the letter went unanswered. This week, House and Senate leadership have stated their intentions to hold hearings.

Dan Barrett Appointed to NC Senate District 34

Republican leaders in Davie, Iredell and Rowan counties have selected Dan Barrett, an attorney and Davie County Commissioner, to fill the unexpired term of former Sen. Andrew Brock, who resigned at the end of June to accept a legislative appointment to the state’s Board of Review.