NC Politics in the News - June 2022

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Agriculture

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Medical marijuana legalization passes NC Senate with bipartisan support
North Carolina is one step closer to joining most of the rest of the country by legalizing medical marijuana, as the state Senate approved it Thursday with bipartisan support. There was also some bipartisan opposition to the bill. But in the end, Senate Bill 711 passed 35-10.

THE CENTER SQUARE: North Carolina Senate approves bill to reauthorize legalization of hemp and CBD
The North Carolina Senate unanimously approved legislation this week to legalize hemp and CBD, which would revert to illegal status at the end of June without legislative action. Senate Bill 762, sponsored by Sen. Brent Jackson, R-Sampson, would allow North Carolina farmers to continue to grow hemp to use for products including cloth, rope, food, fuel, paint, paper particleboard, plastics and thousands of other products.

Economic Development

THE OCRACOKE OBSERVER: Bill would fund efforts to support growing shellfish industry
Last year was a banner year for farmed oyster production in North Carolina, with a 111% increase compared to the previous year. The state’s shellfish industry had $27 million in economic impact and supported 532 jobs in 2019, according to the latest available economic totals, and various groups are working together to double the number of jobs by the end of the decade.

THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: Over 220 jobs coming to Union County with new $47 million manufacturing site
A global chemical and plastics maker will open a manufacturing center in Union County, creating 227 jobs, Gov. Roy Cooper’s office announced Friday. Dymax Corporation’s expansion to North Carolina will mean a $46.7 million investment in Monroe, according to a news release from Cooper’s office.

Education

EDNC: “Parents’ Bill of Rights” passes N.C. Senate
On Wednesday, June 1, the first day of Pride Month, the North Carolina Senate passed a bill that would ban teaching about gender identity and sexuality in K-3 classrooms. The legislation, titled the “Parents’ Bill of Rights,” was introduced in the Senate last week and passed Wednesday by a 28-18 vote along party lines.

Environment

THE CAROLINA JOURNAL: House bill would expand power of state agencies over water quality, penalties
During a June 2 House Judiciary I Committee meeting, a clash among business, environmental, and local interests erupted over a bill that addresses continued concern over drinking water in the Wilmington area. House Bill 1095, PFAS Pollution and Polluter Liability, seeks limits on the amount of PFAS chemicals allowed in water and allows state agencies to levy penalties, even retroactively, on those who violate these limits.

Government

THE CAROLINA JOURNAL: Longtime N.C. Rep. Grier Martin resigning from office
Longtime N.C. Rep. Grier Martin, D-Wake, is resigning from office effective July 8. The announcement was made during Thursday’s House session. According to WRAL, he is leaving to take a job with the Pentagon.

Healthcare

WUNC: Why hospitals oppose part of NC's Medicaid expansion bill
The Medicaid expansion bill includes significant changes to Certificate of Need (CON) regulations, which has already received strong pushback from the North Carolina Healthcare Association (NCHA), a group that represents North Carolina hospitals. The NCHA has long supported Medicaid expansion, but in a statement released this week, it said it could not support changes to the Certificate of Need process.

Politics

THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: NC TV stations pull ad attacking Senate candidate Beasley over its ‘false statements
An attack ad against U.S. Senate candidate Cheri Beasley and her campaign no longer will be seen on some North Carolina TV stations after Cox Media Group determined it contained false statements. Six other media outlets have pulled the ad, at least temporarily, while their legal teams review the statements made against Beasley.

WCNC: NC Gov. Cooper criticizes lieutenant governor's 'dangerous' rhetoric on guns
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper criticized the state's lieutenant governor Tuesday for some of his recent comments on guns, calling the remarks dangerous and shameful. Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson was at the National Rifle Association's annual meetings this weekend, but the comments Cooper pointed to came from a sermon Robinson gave earlier this month in Nash County.

Transportation

ABC 13 NEWS: 'It's disappointing:' Some WNC road projects in jeopardy with NCDOT budget shortfall
North Carolina's State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) is a 10-year state and federal-mandated plan that identifies construction funding for and scheduling of transportation projects throughout the state. "Really, this is the document where kind of the rubber meets the road," said Tristan Winkler, the director of the French Broad River Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO).

SPECTRUM NEWS 1: Raleigh-to-Richmond rail line gets a $58 million boost from the feds
Development of a high-speed rail line connecting Raleigh, North Carolina, to Richmond, Virginia, has been in the works for more than a decade, but the project is picking up the pace. The federal government is putting another $58 million to continue work on the route connecting the two capital cities.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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