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NCSBA Legislative Update – May 10, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – May 10, 2019

2019 “Long” Session Crossover Week – Inside the Numbers

This has been a bizarre session and crossover week was no exception. Traditionally, both chambers have four voting sessions (Monday night-Thursday morning) per week. For most of the 2019 “long” session, the House cut their voting days in half, with no votes on Mondays and Tuesdays. The overall pace feels even slower than the 2017 “long” session when lawmakers filed the fewest number of bills of any “long” session this century. During the 2017 session, 208 bills were signed into law. So far this session, 12 new laws have passed, and only 6 of them required the Governor’s signature. At this point two years ago, the General Assembly voted to override 4 of Governor Cooper’s vetoes. This session: 1 veto, 0 overrides.

Thursday, May 9 was the self-imposed General Assembly “crossover” deadline. This is the last day for non-appropriation and non-tax bills to pass out of one chamber to still be considered “alive” for the remainder of the biennium (though many bills could technically find a way to “rise from the dead” until the 2020 session adjourns sine die).

The final days before “crossover” are typically a very hectic time with numerous committees meeting simultaneously, several daily sessions, and countless caucus meetings. Most years we experience very late nights, and often times the crossover deadline is extended. This year was different. Both chambers finished their work early – the House by two days, the Senate by one (that has never happened in recent memory). In all, 109 bills made crossover this past week. That’s about half the number of bills compared to the two previous crossover weeks (217 bills in 2017 and 203 bills in 2015).

 

2019 K-12 Education Bills to Make Crossover

Below are links to lists of notable K-12 education bills that have passed at least one chamber this session. The lists include bill number, short title, primary sponsors, description, and pertinent comments NCSBA has about a bill.

Click here to view House education K-12 bills that made crossover.

Click here to view Senate education K-12 bills that made crossover.

 

Update on Controversial Education Bills

Last week we highlighted two controversial bills that were seeing movement and had not yet made the crossover deadline.

SB 522: Various Changes to Charter School Laws (Senator Tillman, R-Randolph)

  • Our primary concern was that this bill authorized county commissioners to provide capital funding to charter schools. We were successful in having that section removed before the bill passed the Senate. However, the bill still contains a section lifting the enrollment cap for the 2 virtual charter schools. These schools are in their 4th year of operation and in every year both of them received a D school performance grade and did not meet growth.

 

SB 639: Education Funding Transparency (Senators Edwards, R-Henderson; Ballard, R-Watauga)

  • This bill required countless hours of unnecessary work for LEAs during the budget process. This bill never passed out of the Senate Education committee and thus did not make the crossover deadline.

 

We appreciate all of your efforts. Your calls and emails made a difference. Thank you!

 

Senate Budget Preparation

The House passed its proposed state budget last Friday with a final vote of 61-51. Attention now turns to the Senate as they develop their version of the budget.

The original budget calendar that was released 3 months ago had the Senate passing its budget proposal on Friday, May 24. Earlier this week Senate Majority Leader Harry Brown, who is also the senior Senate budget writer, confirmed to the media that the goal is to pass his chamber’s budget by the end of May. At that point, House and Senate leaders will begin working on a compromise budget to present to the Governor.

 

May 13-17 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Wednesday, May 15

8:30 am – House: Finance – Legislative Offices Building, rm 544 (audio)

 

 

Leanne E. Winner
Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6686

Bruce Mildwurf
Associate Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6692

Richard Bostic
Assistant Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6677

Rebekah Howard
Governmental Relations Research Specialist
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6688

Rebekah HowardNCSBA Legislative Update – May 10, 2019