NC Legislative Update
by Cady Thomas
NC General Assembly Schedule
As the appropriators work on the state budget in conference, the House and Senate have stopped holding committees and are limiting floor sessions. The House only held one (Wednesday) voting session this week and will hold only one again next week (Thursday). The Senate did not have a floor voting session this week and has yet to announce plans for next week.
It is anticipated that once the budget is complete, expected in the first week of October, that committees and floor voting sessions will return with a speedy end to the 2021 (very) long session.
Latest NCDOT Audit
On September 14 Auditor Beth Wood released a report on the NCDOT’s cash spending plan which found that NCDOT did not exceed its spending plan for the first half of fiscal year 2021. However, it also found that the plan was not based on specific projects scheduled for completion during the fiscal year. Thus, in the Auditor’s own words she stated this was not due to good management, but rather “the fact that the Department had not yet exceeded its Spending Plan was largely due to chance.” The report also notes that NCDOT could exceed the Plan in the future and made the following 2 recommendations:
NCDOT should develop the Spending Plan based on specific projects and operations; and
NCDOT should monitor and enforce highway division compliance with the Spending Plan.
The full report includes the response from NCDOT which ultimately agreed with the audit’s results. More details are highlighted in this news article.
Numbers as of September 15:
1,315,427 total cases
3,690 currently hospitalized
14.6% percentage of positive tests each day
62% of adult population fully vaccinated
Other Important Items
With funding issues persisting at NCDOT, many projects are in jeopardy and suspended the prioritization proces for the STIP for 2024-2033. This was because they updated the estimates on almost 500 projects and found the STIP would be more than $3.7 billion over the budget. They are already over budget by $2,8 billion on the committed projects. All regions and divisions are over budget too.