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North Carolina General Assembly Update: General Update, Mask Bill

Checkmate Government Relations brings years of experience providing clients in a diverse range of industries with comprehensive policy and advocacy advice before federal, state, and local agencies. In North Carolina, we advise local municipalities, corporate transportation entities, nonprofit organizations, statewide associations, government vendors, and Fortune 500 companies before the North Carolina General Assembly and executive branch.

 

While the legislature is in session, our team provides weekly updates on the activity at the NC General Assembly this week. Please feel free to contact a member of the team with any questions or visit checkmategr.com for more information about our services.

 


General Update

 

It was a busy week at the North Carolina General Assembly.  Several bills moved through the committee process in each chamber this week.  The House held a floor voting session on Wednesday afternoon and the Senate held votes on Thursday morning.  To date, 174 bills have been filed by the House and 148 by the Senate since the legislative short session began on April 24, 2024.  

 

Budget negotiations continue behind closed doors. However, Senate Pro Temp Phil Berger (R – Rockingham) and House Speaker Tim Moore (R – Cleveland) spoke on the lack of process that has been made to this point. The delay was attributed to the recalculation of the budget surplus and the House’s desire to spend more money than the Senate. The legislature passed a budget for the biennium last year. If a deal cannot be reached to spend the new money, the previously passed budget contains the spending plan for the 2024-25 fiscal year. 

 

Mask Bill

 

This week, the House voted not to concur with the Senate changes to H237, Unmasking Mobs and Criminals.  This bill would revert to pre-pandemic masking regulations and laws.  The bill in its current form would also repeal the health and safety exemption from certain laws prohibiting the wearing of masks in public and enhance the criminal punishment if the defendant wears a mask to conceal their identity during the commission of another crime.  A conference committee will now be appointed with members from each chamber to resolve their differences and create a final version of the legislation.  


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