The keynote speaker for North Carolina NOW’s 2019 State Conference is state Representative Deb Butler, who represents downtown Wilmington and parts of Brunswick County.
Rep. Butler gained national attention for her impassioned rebuke of House Speaker Tim Moore after he called for a vote on Governor Cooper’s veto of the state budget during a session that Democrats and the media had been told would be a non-voting session. Republican representatives, by contrast, had been told to “be in your seats.”
See whole report including summary and bill tracking at NC NOW Legislative Update #29.v1
The fireworks over the House vote to override the budget veto continue. Rep. Darren Jackson has taken a lie detector test and challenged Speaker Moore to do the same. At issue is whether Rep. Jackson was told that the session where the vote to override the budget veto was taken would be a no voting session. Speaker Moore dismissed the challenge claiming that it was a publicity stunt. See: https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2019/09/23/representative-takes-lie-detector-test-after-budget-veto-override
North Carolina NOW Legislative Update—September 3, 2019
Jump to the full summary and listing of bills NC NOW is tracking at NC NOW Legislative Update #27 (3Sep19).
There has been movement on both the budget and Medicaid transformation. To get around the impasse over the vetoed budget, the legislature has passed a slew of stand-alone budget bills addressing specific areas. Most significantly, bills giving pay raises to various state employees were passed and signed by Governor Cooper because both the vetoed budget and the Governor’s proposed compromise budget agree on these pay raises. However, the two budgets do not agree on pay raises for teachers. The bill dealing with teacher pay raises was sent back to committee because Democrats had prepared ten amendments. Republicans did not want recorded votes against these proposed amendments. This summary by Rep. Marcia Morey of Durham nicely sums up the situation:
Posted in budget, legislative update, Medicaid, medicaid expansion, NC budget, state budget issues, teachers
Tagged budget, medicaid, medicaid expansion, NC budget, nc budget issues
Letter To Editor (LTE) calling out NC lawmakers for inappropriate use of taxpayer money in the state budget, by Audrey Muck, ran in the 7/13/19 edition of the Winston-Salem Journal. Find it at The Readers’ Forum: Saturday letters.
A recent letter (“Getting through,” July 2) asked what it will take for our state legislative leadership to understand that sex education and affordable birth control are the answers to abortion. The situation is actually worse. They’ve doubled down on their extremism and taxpayers will pay at least $2.64 million in their budget for religious anti-abortion activities of so-called crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) in North Carolina.
Contrary to what the logo says – this is a CPC organization in Asheville/Buncombe which has been receiving taxpayer money from NC budget for years.Since 2018, it is also receiving federal grant money!
You can go directly to the full legislative update, NC_NOW_Legislative_Update #24 (29Jul19), which includes the week’s summary and bill listings. Written by Robin Davis, NC NOW Vice President of Political Action and Lobbyist. Summary includes the state budget impasse and a lawmaker has resigned his seat after pleading guilty to cyberstalking his estranged wife.
Still no vote on whether to override the governor’s veto of the budget and no progress to report on a stand-alone bill to expand Medicaid. The Winston-Salem Journal reported, “As has been the pattern for 11 consecutive sessions, neither the veto override vote nor the bipartisan Medicaid expansion legislation House Bill 655 was addressed.” “The next opportunity will come Monday night [7/29/19], which would represent Day 32 of the stalemate.” See: https://www.journalnow.com/news/state/n-c-house-pushes-possible-votes-on-state-budget-veto/article_00c86259-3fb7-5758-9ed5-9aff47c9c693.html
Posted in budget, cyberstalking, domestic violence, Medicaid, medicaid expansion, state budget issues, veto
Tagged budget, cyberstalking, domestic violence, medicaid, medicaid expansion, state budget
Option to go directly to the NC_NOW_Legislative_Update_#23.15jul19.v2, with summary and bill listings. Written by Robin Davis, NC NOW Vice President of Political Action and Lobbyist. Summary follows.
No vote yet whether to override the governor’s veto of the budget. Republicans are scrambling, trying to find enough votes to override (i.e., offering pork), but are meeting Democratic resistance. One account summarized the situation: “All day, Democratic lawmakers were in and out of House Speaker Tim Moore’s (R-King’s Mountain) corner office, only to be confronted by their fellow party members in the hallways afterward. At times, some lawmakers looked distressed, fingers were pressed into chests, exchanges, became heated. One lawmaker looked ready to cry.” See: https://www.northcarolinahealthnews.org/2019/07/10/lawmakers-strong-arm-over-budget-medicaid-expansion-but-come-up-empty-handed/.
Go directly to the NC_NOW_Legislative_Update #22 (1 Jul 19), with summary and bill listings. Written by Robin Davis, NC NOW Vice President of Political Action and Lobbyist. Summary follows.
The legislature passed the budget on Thursday, June 27, and the governor vetoed it the next day. Governor Cooper stated that he did not veto the budget solely because it does not contain Medicaid expansion. He believes it also fails in the areas of education and the economy. He will offer a counter-proposal. For more information, see: https://governor.nc.gov/news/governor-cooper-vetoes-gop-budget-fails-public-education-health-care-and-economy. If an agreement between the governor and the legislative leaders cannot be reached before the end of the fiscal year, there will not be a government shut-down; everything will continue to be funded at its present level.
The budget also quadrupled support for Human Coalition, a Texas-based anti-abortion organization that runs a crisis pregnancy center in Raleigh whose main focus is to convince women to carry their pregnancies to term. The Raleigh News and Observer has done in-depth reporting on Human Coalition and other crisis pregnancy organizations that receive state funding: see https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article231719523.html
See NC_NOW_Legislative_Update #20 (17 Jun 19), with summary and bill listings. Summary follows.
Last week the House and Senate leaders appointed budget conference committee members to reconcile the House and Senate versions of the budget. Budget chairs from both the House and Senate will serve as chairs. For committee members, see: https://www.ncleg.gov/Legislation/Bills/Conferees/2019/H966. No Senate Democrats were appointed to the committee, and only two House Democrats were appointed: Rep. Charles Graham, D-Robeson, and Rep. Elmer Floyd, D-Cumberland–the only Democrats who voted for the House budget.
Posted in budget, CPC, education, legislative update, Medicaid, medicaid expansion
Tagged budget, CPC, education, legislative update, medicaid, medicaid expansion
On Friday, 4/26/19, the House rolled out part of its budget. It includes an appropriation of 3 million dollars to test untested rape kits—Attorney General Josh Stein and Governor Cooper requested 6 million dollars. The anti-abortion Human Coalition, which funds crisis pregnancy centers, will receive 1.2 million dollars. Expect more budget information next week. For more information, see: https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article229714994.html
It is always necessary to watch the budget bills because they often contain policy measures in addition to appropriations. For example, the House Education budget, released on Friday, April 26, contains a provision designed to prevent teachers from taking time off during a school day to go to the legislature to rally in support of educational issues, including their pay. The bill would require schools not to grant teachers a personal leave day unless they verify that a substitute teacher is available. Many school districts have closed schools on May 1 because there are not enough substitutes to fill in for the teachers who have taken a personal leave day to go to Raleigh.
Posted in abortion, budget, education, ncga interference, rape kits
Tagged abortion, budget, ncga int, ncga interference, r, Rape, rape kits
NC NOW Legislative Update #6, 11 Mar 19 includes the ERA bills filed on 3/5/19 while women and allies filled the Legislative Building with hours of activities. It also talks about Governor Cooper’s budget and what we may expect this session.
March 5 was an exciting day at the General Assembly. Bills for North Carolina to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) were introduced in both the House (HB271) and the Senate (SB184). The ERA-NC Alliance (North Carolina NOW is an lead member organization) organized events that brought over 150 ERA advocates to the General Assembly to advocate for the ERA, hear speeches, participate in a press conference, and lobby legislators to sign on as sponsors the bills. So far all Democratic members of the House and Senate are sponsors. The halls were filled with women wearing green and white and waving ERA YES rounds. Thirty-eight states are needed to ratify the ERA, and 37 have already done so. Let’s make North Carolina number 38!
One of the groups of women and allies at NCGA on 3/5/19, Photo Credit: Aylett Colston