North Carolina House Passes Bill Aimed At Resuming Executions After 9-Year …

30 Apr 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

20 arrested at NC Legislature protesting GOP’s policies.

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – The North Carolina House worked into the wee hours Thursday to wrap up a marathon week after passing scores of bills before a deadline designed to separate what lawmakers consider the best ideas from the rest of the pack. Legislation unrelated to taxes, fees or spending that doesn’t pass at least one chamber by Thursday is largely off the table for consideration until 2017. The chamber voted unanimously Wednesday for a bill addressing what’s called employee misclassification, when an employer intentionally mislabels workers to gain financial advantage. Another provision could fine doctors up to $500 and put their medical licenses at risk if they ask questions about gun ownership on medical-history questionnaires or tell authorities about concerns raised in patient interviews.

The bills addressed restricting dangerous exotic animals, speeding in work zones and giving more American Indians the right to hunt and fish without licenses. The lack of specificity on a fourth measure — premium pay for leading teachers at a school — prompted Republican leaders to send the bill to a budget committee for further review. Earlier, the Senate paused deliberations for about 20 minutes as singing, chanting protesters — most wearing clerical collars — demanded that GOP lawmakers reverse decisions on issues including tax cuts criticized for mostly benefiting big companies and the rich. Ten protesters were arrested after they kneeled near the brass main doors of the Senate chamber and were charged with violating fire-safety codes or second-degree trespass, according to online county arrest records. ENVRIONMENTAL REVIEWS: The House agreed to scale back the scope of a 1971 law that requires government agencies to examine how spending public funds or using public land could harm the environment.

The State Environmental Policy Act, which tells agencies to create reports that examine conservation-friendly alternatives, is redundant given the myriad environmental controls and regulations now in place to protect the environment, according to bill sponsors. “Nothing is being weakened when it comes to protecting the end result,” said Rep. But gun control advocates have strongly opposed the bill, which North Carolinians Against Gun Violence called “this year’s worst gun legislation” on Wednesday.

Lawmakers were expected to take up legislation Wednesday that would let more people carry concealed handguns in more places, a move criticized by state NAACP President the Rev. The bill would repeal some sections of North Carolina’s pistol purchase permit requirements. ▪ Allowing prosecutors and administrative law judges with a concealed carry permit to carry guns in courtrooms, and allowing hunters to use suppressors on short-barreled rifles. ▪ Prohibiting doctors from using a written questionnaire to ask patients if they have guns in their house, including psychiatrists. The measure, approved 79-33 and heading to the Senate, also would make it a crime for anyone to let a member of the public come into direct physical contact with such an animal. But opponents of the broader changes said the act still served an important purpose to ensure public assets were used wisely and in a transparent way. “This bill has been called reform, (but) I really think it’s more in the nature of repeal,” said Rep.

Current owners of these animals would be exempt from the restrictions, but they would have to register with the local animal control authority and show proof of liability insurance. Some misdemeanors, such as harassing jurors, impersonating a firefighter or some disorderly conduct offenses, would no longer be cause for denying a concealed handgun permit. The Humane Society of the United States lobbied for the bill in North Carolina, which is one of only six states without a statewide law regulating keeping such animals, according to Rep. The law was cited in 2010 by a judge in requiring a proposed cement plant in southeastern North Carolina to undergo an environmental review because the company had received public incentives.

TEACHER ASSAULTS: High school students would face a felony and possible time behind bars the second time they’re convicted of assaulting a teacher or school volunteer on campus in a bill approved 30-20 by the Senate. Supreme Court last June upheld the constitutional rights of people to peacefully assemble and protest government policies by striking down a Massachusetts law limiting protests outside abortion clinics. The example of civil-disobedience in response to conservative governing has been copied by activists in Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and other states. Republican Party executive director Todd Poole said the demonstrators were acting “under a false cloak” of morality “to push for their radical agenda of bigger government and higher taxes.” CHIROPRACTOR CO-PAYS: A majority in the House believes state-regulated insurance companies should set the co-payments to see a chiropractor at a rate no higher than the rate to visit a primary care physician.

She unsuccessfully pushed amendments that would have delayed a felony until the third offense. “Certainly there ought to be more remedies than the school-to-prison pipeline that’s being described in this bill,” said Sen. The bill passed 68-43 late Wednesday after committee debate this week in which House members extolled the benefits they’ve received from chiropractic care. Terry Van Duyn, D-Buncombe. “The perpetrators need to know that their actions will get them in trouble if they’re not the appropriate actions,” said Sen. The measure, however, is considered a small consolation prize to municipalities that still want restored a state historic rehabilitation tax credit that the General Assembly allowed to expire at the end of last year.

And another measure addressing decision-making by insurance companies on which prescription drugs they’ll cover and when got pulled early Thursday when the bill sponsor suggested it may not pass on the floor.

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