Rep. Shelly Willingham Legislative Lane Thursday July 2, 2020

LEGISLATIVE LANE – Thursday July 2, 2020

The Honorable Shelly Willingham

..At YOUR Service!…..

300 N Salisbury Street

Legislative Office Building

Suite 513

Raleigh, NC 27603

shelly.willingham@ncleg.net

(919) 715-3024 (O)

(919) 754-3224 (F)



DISTRICT 23

Edgecombe & Martin


Governor Cooper Signs these Bills into Law

Governor Cooper shared this statement on HB 1096:

“Expanding the Teaching Fellows program will get North Carolina’s brightest students committed to teaching in our state’s classrooms. We should  include HBCUs in the expansion to improve diversity at the front of the classroom, which research shows can improve student performance.”

Governor Cooper shared this statement on SB 818:

“I signed this bill because it funds step increases for teachers that have already been promised, but it falls outrageously short on raises we need to give teachers and all school personnel like bus drivers and cafeteria workers. The Legislature must make educator pay a top priority when they come back in September.” 

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North Carolina Pauses in Safer At Home Phase 2, Adds Statewide Requirement for Face Coverings

Governor Roy Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen announced last week that North Carolina will remain in Safer at Home Phase 2 for three more weeks. Cooper also announced that face coverings must be worn when people are in public places as officials seek to stabilize concerning trends of increasing viral spread. 

Growing evidence shows that cloth face coverings, when worn consistently, can decrease the spread of COVID-19, especially among people who are not yet showing symptoms of the virus.

Based on the metrics laid out in April, North Carolina is evaluating a combination of the data from the following categories that shows the indicators moving in the wrong direction, causing officials to pause in Phase 2. 

  • North Carolina’s syndromic surveillance trend for COVID-like illness is increasing.
  • North Carolina’s trajectory of lab-confirmed cases starting to level, but is still increasing.
  • North Carolina’s trajectory in percent of tests returning positive remains elevated. 
  • North Carolina’s trajectory of hospitalizations are increasing, though we have capacity in our healthcare system.

Businesses can download templates for signs on face coverings here.



Read Frequently Asked Questions about last week’s executive Order and mandatory face coverings. 


Legislators, Advocates Push for Needed Changes to NC’s Unemployment System

Long before the COVID-19 crisis, North Carolina had the worst unemployment system in the country for unemployed workers. Our system provided too little in compensation, for too short a period of time, to too few unemployed workers.

I am a strong supporter of House Bill 1075 to fix the unemployment system now so jobless workers can weather the current crisis and the next one. Federal pandemic assistance programs are set to expire at the end of July and December, leaving workers and businesses across our state with an inadequate system to stabilize the state’s economy through to a full recovery, particularly given the potential for a second wave of the virus in the fall.

House Bill 1075 would:

·        Lengthen the amount of time an unemployed worker could potentially receive compensation to 26 weeks (up from 13);

·        Increase the maximum potential weekly benefit to $450/week (up from a max of $350/week); and

·        Expand when a worker could receive unemployment such as when a spouse relocates for a job.

Democrats Propose Small Business Relief Grants to Businesses Closed Due to COVID-19

Last week House Democrats proposed a $50 million grant program to help small businesses like gyms forced to close due to COVID-19. Priority for the grants would be given to businesses with less than 100 employees and those who are not receiving federal small business assistance.

Republican leaders blocked consideration of the amendment, instead, putting in their own, similar amendment in a bill that is currently sitting in a legislative graveyard.

All of our businesses will continue to suffer until the public health situation improves and consumers grow confident enough to resume normal spending. Until then, we should stop partisan political games and provide our closed businesses with funding to help them survive.

Democrats Propose Requiring Agricultural Production Facilities to Better Protect Factor Workers as a Condition of Receiving COVID-19 Funding

North Carolina has more COVID-19 outbreaks at meat and poultry processing facilities than any other state. Despite voluntary guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and NC DHHS, more than 2,000 processing plant workers had tested positive for the virus by the end of May. These workers are disproportionately African-American and Hispanic, a major contributing factor as to the growing spread of the virus in these communities.

HB 1201 spends nearly $18 million to help small, independent meat processors to increase production. House Democrats put forward an amendment to require the processing plants to comply with safety guidance from federal and state health officials as a condition to receive funding. The amendment died on a tied vote with some Republicans joining Democrats in voting Yes.

After the amendment failed, a compromise amendment was adopted to require the grant recipients to submit to public health officials a plan detailing how they will protect employees from viral spread.


“Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth.”

— William Faulkner


STAY Home, Healthy and Hopeful!

PHASE II REMINDER: The virus is still circulating, and there’s no cure or vaccine yet, so people still need to be cautious. People should remember the 3 W’s when they leave home:

1.      Wear a face covering

2.     Wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds at a time

3.     Wait 6 feet apart from other people 

Source: NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS)

REMINDER TO COMPLETE CENSUS 2020


2020 House Committee Assignments

  • Alcoholic Beverage Control
  • Appropriations
  • Appropriations-Transportation
  • Congressional Redistricting
  • Disaster Relief
  • Economic Development & Global Engagement
  • Elections and Ethics Law
  • House Select Committee on COVID-19 (REMOTE ONLY with Public Access via http://www.ncleg.gov, Click Audio and Committee Room 1228 LB)



  • Insurance
  • Residential Planning and Permitting
  • Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House
  • State and Local Government

Rep. Shelly Willinghan Legislative Lane Friday June 26, 2020

LEGISLATIVE LANE – Friday June 26, 2020

The Honorable Shelly Willingham

..At YOUR Service!..

300 N Salisbury Street

Legislative Office Building

Suite 513

Raleigh, NC 27603

shelly.willingham@ncleg.net

(919) 715-3024 (O)

(919) 754-3224 (F)



DISTRICT 23

Edgecombe & Martin

 
 

State Investment in Water Rescue Equipment Pays off for Rocky Mount

ROCKY MOUNT: As floodwaters rose this week along the Tar River to levels not seen since Hurricanes Matthew and Florence, water rescue teams from the Rocky Mount Fire Department put some new state-provided equipment into action, rescuing people stranded in their homes and vehicles.

“We are grateful for our first responders who rescued people during these floods and brought them to safety,” said Governor Cooper. “Having the right equipment to do the job saves lives.”

More than $2 million in search and rescue funding was included in Governor Cooper’s 2019 budget and appropriated by the legislature. Last July, North Carolina Emergency Management distributed $1.4 million in new gear to water rescue teams across the state, including boats, motors, fuel tanks, life jackets, dry suits, paddles and maintenance supplies. 

The Rocky Mount Fire Department received two inflatable swift water rescue boats and motors valued at approximately $55,000. Rocky Mount Fire was one of 26 agencies that received new equipment last summer. 

“This investment in our local water rescue teams makes us stronger and more prepared as a state,” said Emergency Management Director Mike Sprayberry. “The Rocky Mount Fire Department was able to respond and assist its residents this week, and those of surrounding communities, without needing to wait for help from elsewhere.”

“The resources provided to our swiftwater team by the state of North Carolina have proven to be especially valuable over the past three days and have played a key role in the success of our team assisting our citizens,” said RMFD Battalion Chief of Operations and Swiftwater Emergency Rescue Team member Charles Bunn, III. “We are grateful for these resources that have allowed us to fulfill our mission of serving the City of Rocky Mount by protecting lives and property through quality and excellence in service.”

Using a combination of boats and high-clearance trucks, Rocky Mount firefighters were able to assist 92 people and four pets in evacuating 75 flooded homes. About 20 commercial buildings in town were also affected by floodwaters. The American Red Cross is assisting some of the flooded-out residents with temporary shelter.

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Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) is dedicated to improving the quality of life for all ESRD (kidney failure) patients through education and advocacy. We are is a national, non-profit, patient-led organization located in Washington, DC with offices in Chicago, IL and Sacramento, CA.

Kidney failure patients are particularly vulnerable to viruses and infections, and the COVID-19 pandemic is significantly impacting their lives. As I shared with you in April, we are providing our members with critical information they need to safely navigate through the pandemic since kidney patients must continue to dialyze as a matter of life and death.

· The DPC Education Center website at https://www.dpcedcenter.org/ is dedicated to improving kidney patients’ quality of life and reducing the impact of ESRD through education and awareness of dialysis and kidney disease issues. While the website can be translated into multiple languages via Google Translation, we also offer a dedicated Spanish section (https://www.dpcedcenter.org/resources/spanish/) for those who prefer to read content in Spanish.

· The Kidney Citizen magazine provides timely information on a variety of topics. Distribution is via mail and electronically at https://www.dpcedcenter.org/news-events/the-kidney-citizen/ If you’d like to be added to the distribution list of this free publication, please reply to this email with your preferred mailing address.

As North Carolina focuses on the needs of vulnerable populations in light of COVID-19. Kidney failure is on the rise and disproportionately impacts communities of color that already experience many health disparities. Please keep ESRD patients in mind. They depend on state resources such as Medicaid, transportation services, chronic renal disease programs, access to Medigap coverage and increased access to living organ donation.

***SEE WEBINAR INFORMATION BELOW ***



Governor Cooper Signs 12 Bills, Vetoes One

Governor Roy Cooper signed the following bills into law:

· House Bill 158: Covid-19 New Driver Response

· House Bill 472: NCSU/ NC A&T Matching Funds/ Umstead Act

· House Bill 1208: Funding for Workforce Housing Loan Program

· House Bill 1136: Funds for NCSSM – Morganton Campus

· House Bill 1071: Funds to DPI for ADM Growth

· Senate Bill 379: Retirement System Admin. Changes

· Senate Bill 562: The Second Chance Act

Governor Cooper shared this statement on SB 562:

“We can give people who make amends for past mistakes the opportunity to clear their records. This bill offers that opportunity and a path to good jobs and a brighter future.” 



· Senate Bill 720: GSC Conforming Amends./ 2019 Land-Use Changes

· Senate Bill 729: GSC Modernize Partition Laws

· Senate Bill 801: Military Presence Stabilization Fund/ Funding

· Senate Bill 806: Capital Appropriation – Western Carolina Univ.

· Senate Bill 836: State Operations/ Increase Federal Funds Use

Governor Cooper also vetoed the following bill:

House Bill 594: Temp Open Gyms/ Health Clubs/ Fitness Ctrs

Governor Cooper shared this statement on HB 594:

“Tying the hands of public health officials in times of pandemic is dangerous, especially when case counts and hospitalizations are rising. State and local officials must be able to take swift action during the COVID-19 emergency to prevent a surge of patients from overwhelming hospitals and endangering the lives of North Carolinians. The bill could restrict leaders who need to respond quickly to outbreaks and protect public health and safety.”

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“Watch your thoughts, they become words. Watch your words, they become your actions. Watch your actions, they become habits. Watch your habits, they become character. Watch your character, it becomes your destiny.”

— Frank Jackson

STAY Home, Healthy and Hopeful!

PHASE II REMINDER: The virus is still circulating, and there’s no cure or vaccine yet, so people still need to be cautious. People should remember the 3 W’s when they leave home:

1.      Wear a face covering

2.     Wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds at a time

3.     Wait 6 feet apart from other people

Source: NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS)

REMINDER TO COMPLETE CENSUS 2020

2020 House Committee Assignments

· Alcoholic Beverage Control

· Appropriations

· Appropriations-Transportation

· Congressional Redistricting

· Disaster Relief

· Economic Development & Global Engagement

· Elections and Ethics Law

· House Select Committee on COVID-19 (REMOTE ONLY with Public Access via www.ncleg.gov, Click Audio and Committee Room 1228 LB)



· Insurance

· Residential Planning and Permitting

· Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House

· State and Local Government

IT IS THE…

#Timeforwaitingisover
#Fearoftheshiftabsodamnlutely
#Sickandtiredofbeingsickandtired
#Blacklivesmatter #Iwatchedvideo
#Whereisthethreat
#
Icantbreathe8minutes46seconds
#Policebrutalitymurdertheytired

#1898WilmingtonRaceRiot
#1921TulsaBlackWallStreet
#Confederatemonumentstograveyard
#Tiredofsafenegroblackfolk
#Unstablepresident
#Iamnotok #Ibeenengagedbeforenow
#Coronavirusstayfocused #Stayhome

Curmilus Butch Dancy II 2020