Rep. Shelly Willingham
N.C. House of Representatives
501 N Salisbury Street, #501
Raleigh, North Carolina 27603
(919) 754-3224 (fax)
Representative Shelly Willingham
Dedicated to District 23
April 2, 2015
Alcoholic Beverage Control
Appropriations – Information Technology
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WISHING YOU A
NC HOUSE & SENATE
Senate Bill 20 would lower the state gas tax from 37.5 cents per gallon to 36 cents per gallon on Wednesday. But it would cancel out a much larger cut to the gas tax scheduled to take effect in July. Rep. David Lewis, R-Harnett, said the current formula by which the gas tax is calculated, passed 25 years ago, is outdated and too inherently unstable to allow the state to plan for road and bridge construction and maintenance. Rep. Paul Luebke, D-Durham, took issue with the GOP characterization of the measure as a tax cut. “Consumers of this state need to know that, on July 1, in rounded terms, they’ll be paying 6 cents more for a gallon of gas,” Luebke said. “I think it’s important for people to know that.” Read more here: http://www.wral.com/gas-tax-changes-head-to-governor/14551663/
North Carolina legislation that’s similar to Indiana’s controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act could come up for debate in the state House as soon as this week. Identical bills were filed just last week in the House and Senate. And by Monday, there were signs that the firestorm that greeted Indiana’s recently enacted law could spread to North Carolina if the predominantly Republican legislature goes ahead with a similar measure. Critics said the legislation would provide legal cover for businesses and individuals who discriminate against gays and lesbians. That charge was disputed by conservative Christian leaders, who said North Carolina needs a law to protect people as they exercise the religious liberty guaranteed in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
When state Sen. Harry Brown presented a plan this week to change how the state distributes sales tax revenues, few understood that language in the legislation would cause about half of North Carolina’s cities and towns to lose money. Brown, a Jacksonville Republican, acknowledged Friday that he is among them. Brown’s bill, which has the support of Senate Republican leadership, was introduced late Monday along with a chart showing that about 90 of the state’s 100 counties would gain revenue over a five-year span under the change. The plan would distribute sales tax revenue based on each county’s population, instead of allocating it by where goods are sold.
House Bill 372 and Senate Bill 574 serve as placeholders for legislators, including Rep. Donny Lambeth, R-Forsyth, trying to find common ground over differences. Compromise discussions have been taking place formally for at least four months.
Two more bills — Senate bills 696 and 703 — revive dramatic measures, one of which failed to get out of a joint legislative oversight commission in February. Senate Bill 701 would forbid the state from providing financing to primary care case management programs, such as Community Care of N.C.
During an audit period, the N.C. Department of Commerce’s Division of Employment Security determined it had overpaid $50 million in unemployment insurance benefits in 54,527 cases; however, as many as one-quarter might not have required documentation to support the department’s conclusion, according to an audit….A wide-ranging audit of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services…found problems in many areas, including Medicaid, Vocational Rehabilitation and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, to name three. Instances of noncompliance included making overpayments to medical providers and errors with enrolling and terminating medical providers. In addition, auditors determined that the agency, led by Secretary Aldona Wos, did not implement full correction action on prior recommendations from the previous audit on DHHS.
Charter schools run by national chains would have an easier time branching out in North Carolina under a bill proposed by a powerful state senator. Senate Bill 456 would direct the state Board of Education to come up with a new process and set of rules for charter schools run by for-profit or nonprofit management companies to be able to replicate their model across the state. This would apply to chains such as the for-profit Charter Schools USA or nonprofit KIPP. Both have at least one school in the Charlotte area and have plans for more. http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/education/your-schools-blog/article16934984.html
A bill filed by some Republican House members Wednesday would change certain restrictions on abortions. Those opposed to this bill said it would drastically change abortion in North Carolina. The bill would: