NC Legislative Update
By Cady Thomas
Bills and Legislation
This bill was signed by the governor last week and makes clarifying changes to the design build/design build bridging statutes. The provisions were originally in House Bill 820 and were added to the senate bill during a conference committee.
The bill, a full summary of which can be found here, does the following:
Requires that project teams must be selected either from a list of the licensed contractors, licensed subcontractors, and design professionals whom the design-builder proposes to use for the project’s design and construction, or from a list of the licensed contractors and design professionals whom the design-builder proposes to use and an outline of the strategy the design-builder plans to use for seeking team members using the public bidding statutes.
Prohibits a governmental entity from requiring the the costs of the subcontractor work in the design criteria package in a proposal and requires them to provide a list of the conditions to be included as a fixed fee.
Prohibits requiring contractors to waive future claims in order to receive undisputed progress payments.
Grants attorneys’ fees to the prevailing party in a lawsuit Court’s enforcement of prevailing party’s Attorney’s Fees.
Governor Cooper vetoed the bill which would have pushed the 2022 primary election date to June 7 from May 17. Unless changed by another bill or the North Carolina Supreme Court.
Numbers as of January 31, 2022:
2,421,799 total cases
4,882 currently hospitalized
26.9% percentage of positive tests each day
71% of adult population fully vaccinated
Other Important Items
On January 7, 2022, Governor Cooper issued Executive Order 246 directing NCDOT to enact a clean transportation plan as the order sets goals to move to more electric vehicles. Several state legislators raised nine questions about order.
Senators Sawyer, McInnis and Newton sent Governor Cooper a letter which, among other things, question how the state will pay for the plan under the current funding structure for NCDOT and the heavy reliance on the gas tax and argue the order conflicts with House Bill 951 signed by Cooper in October of 2021. Governor Cooper responded with a limited response letter from the NC Director of Clean Energy, Dionne Dell-Gatti.
The North Carolina Supreme Court will hear the appeal of a Superior Court decision upholding the state and congressional maps on February 3. The lower court determined that while the NCGA may have drawn the maps to ensure their political advantage, they could not overturn the maps because using political data is not unconstitutional. A different Superior Court panel held in 2019 the court could require a redraw. Thus, all eyes are on the NC Supreme Court.
An effort is underway to prevent first-term Republican Congressman Madison Cawthorn from seeking office again. Free Speech of People has filed a legal challenge to his eligibility claiming his actions surrounding the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol violated the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution which bars people from holding office if they “shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.”