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LEGISLATIVE & POLICY NEWS

  • Pay Raises, Other Education Bills Pending On The Governor’s Desk

    Before voting to adjourn and reconvene on Wednesday, November 13, the General Assembly successfully passed several pieces of legislation, which were then sent to the Governor to be signed into law. The Governor has since signed several of these bills, while numerous others, such as the two mini-budget bills providing pay raises for educators, remain unsigned.

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  • Legislators Push Forward Mini-Budgets On Educator Raises

    Lawmakers working toward a self-imposed adjournment deadline of today rolled out and approved several mini-budgets this week, including bills addressing pay raises for various groups of educators. This week’s action on education mini-budgets coincided with continuing delays by the Senate GOP leadership to attempt overriding Governor Roy Cooper’s veto of House Bill 966, the full state budget package for the 2019-21 biennium. The House has overridden that veto, and Senate Republicans need either one Democrat to vote with them to override or two Senate Democrats to be absent when the override vote occurs to enact the budget over the Governor’s objections. Senate Leader Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, said in a press conference Monday the override attempt would not occur unless he thought it would succeed. But he left the bill on the Senate floor calendar all week, keeping the option open to attempt the override, while continuing efforts to garner the needed Democratic votes to enact H966.

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  • Lawmakers Consider Leaving, Returning Nov. 13

    Senate Rules Chairman Bill Rabon (R-Brunswick) filed Senate Joint Resolution (SJR) 694 late Wednesday evening to formally adjourn the N.C. House of Representatives and Senate the following day, as well as limit what may be discussed upon reconvening. If approved by both chambers, this adjournment is scheduled to take effect at the end of Thursday’s session, and it schedules the House and Senate to reconvene on November 13, 2019 at noon. During the November session, legislators may only consider redistricting matters and considerations of a new Joint Resolution or amendments to SJR 694. Upon adjournment of the November session, the House and Senate will not reconvene until January 14, 2020, at noon.

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  • Legislature Approves Innovative School District Changes, Expands Advanced Teaching Roles

    Members of the N.C. House and Senate gave final approval on Tuesday to a bill making changes to the Innovative School District Program, as well as the Advanced Teaching Roles Pilot Program. If signed into law by the Governor, Senate Bill 522 would create a three-year process before qualifying schools are transferred into the Innovative School District (ISD), and release the State Board of Education (SBE) from its obligation to choose four schools to be added to the ISD next year. The new process would give notice to qualifying schools in year one and place the schools on a “watch list” in year two, before finally placing the schools on a “warning list” in year three if school performance has not improved. If a school on the warning list has not made requisite improvements before year four, the bill states the SBE must select the school for transfer to the ISD. In addition to the ISD changes, lawmakers also included in the bill an unrelated provision eliminating the cap on the number of local boards of education that can participate in the Advanced Teaching Roles Pilot Program.

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