|The Raleigh Report|
Rep. Susan Fisher
Proudly Serving Buncombe CountyDistrict 114
May 13, 2019
|News from Raleigh|
The General Assembly has taken a break since the State Budget work. The break began May 8 and continues until this Wednesday, May 15. It had been a particularly challenging week prior to the break. Now that crossover has happened, we begin to take up bills passed by the Senate. More about crossover below.
|Legislative Crossover Deadline|
What is the Legislative Crossover Deadline? It is a date (May 9th this year) in the Rules that the NC House adopts to govern itself. Under our rules a bill that has not passed either the House or the Senate by May 9th, is dead and not eligible for consideration the rest of this year or in the Short Session next year. But our rules also contain major exceptions or loopholes to the May 9 deadline that leadership can use to continue to hear issues that failed to pass before Crossover. The date came early for the NC House this year because there was a big Republican political conference at the Grove Park Inn that legislative leaders wanted to attend. So we finished our work on May 7th. I am proud to report that I helped pass the following bills before that deadline:
|House Bill 613 Essential Services for Homeless Youth, a bill that I sponsored along with Rep. Josh Dobson that would provide a pathway for unaccompanied homeless youth to receive medical, dental and optometrist care as well as mental health services. It passed the House with a strong bipartisan vote and we hope the same will be true in the Senate|
House Bill 295 Prohibit Corporal Punishment in Public Schools Another bipartisan bill that I was primary sponsor for is HB 295 This bill also enjoyed a strong bipartisan vote and it would clean up the statutes around corporal punishment in the public schools since as of late last year all 115 school systems have determined that they will no longer employ corporal punishment as a form of discipline. This bill affirms that. While there were many disappointments over important bills that did not make crossover, we are hopeful we will see passage of these two in the Senate.
Unfortunately, many top priorities did not even receive a legislative hearing because they are opposed by legislative leadership. Here are some of those bills:1. Medicaid Expansion to Close the Coverage Gap (HB 5)2. Equal Pay for Equal Work (HB 46)3. Nonpartisan Redistricting Commission (HB 69)4. Raise the Minimum Wage (HB 366)5. Adopt the Equal Rights Amendment (HB 271)6. Restore Longevity Pay for Teachers (HB 248)7. $15 Minimum Wage for All School Employees (HB 359)8. Gun Violence Prevention Act (HB 86)9. Equality for All (HB 514)10. Polluter Pays (HB 566)
Bipartisanship in legislature this year a subjective matterWRALHouse Democrats disappointed policy ideas were ignoredAssociated Press
|Community College Finish Line Grants|
This week Governor Roy Cooper announced the new Awake58 Fellows program, an initiative to promote Finish Line Grants on North Carolina community college campuses. Awake58 fellows will encourage their eligible peers to apply for Finish Line Grants to cover costs that might otherwise force them to drop out of school.
Through a grant from the Belk Endowment, EducationNC will fund up to 20 Awake58 Fellows to begin three-month fellowships this spring. Nine community colleges have selected applicants in good academic standing to serve as Fellows on their campuses. Fellows will receive a $1,000 stipend and professional networking experience for their work to expand the use of Finish Line Grants.
Last year, Gov. Cooper created the Finish Line Grants program to help community college students cover unforeseen expenses and complete their training. To date, hundreds of Finish Line Grants have been distributed to students across North Carolina.
I supported an amendment to the House budget to expand Finish Line Grants, but it was defeated on a party-line vote.
The Finish Line Grants program uses funds from the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) to help community college students cover unforeseen financial emergencies like medical needs, car repairs and childcare so they can complete their training. Community college students can apply for Finish Line Grants of up to $1,000 per semester through their community college financial aid office or their local NCWorks Career Center.For more information about Finish Line Grants, click HERE.
|Thank you for your continued interest in state government. I hope you will contact me if I can be of help. Keep in touch,|
|*Please remember that you can listen to each day’s session, committee meetings and press conferences on the General Assembly’s website at www.ncleg.gov Once on the site, select “Audio,” and then make your selection – House Chamber, Senate Chamber, Appropriations Committee Room or Press Conference Room.|
Committees(Click on the Committee below to follow link)Alcoholic Beverage ControlAppropriationsAppropriations EducationEducation K-12State and Local Government