Raleigh, NC – Today, the North Carolina House of Representatives convened in honor of the late former Representative Melanie Goodwin.
HJR 971, A Joint Resolution Honoring the Life and Memory of Melanie Wade Goodwin, Former Member of the General Assembly passed the House unanimously Wednesday.
Rep. Goodwin served three terms in the state House from 2004 to 2010, representing Richmond and Montgomery counties. She co-chaired the House Elections Law and Campaign Finance Reform Committees and the Legislative Administrative Procedures Oversight Committee in the General Assembly.
Rep. Gooodwin was also an attorney and served as a Deputy Commissioner at the North Carolina Industrial Commission. She passed September 2, 2020 after bravely battling breast cancer for eleven years.
House Speaker Tim Moore said, “I am honored to have served with Rep. Melanie Goodwin. She was an amazing person, a dear friend, and an excellent representative. She was also a devoted mother and a loving wife, which meant more to her than anything else.”
HB 951 passed the North Carolina House in a bipartisan vote.
Speaker Moore said, “It’s time to usher North Carolina into the future of energy. This bill gives our state a diverse portfolio of energy sources and includes input from a diverse group of energy policy stakeholders who were brought together to confront the challenges facing consumers.”
He continued, “I’m determined to have North Carolina set the tone for what energy policy should be. And this bill gets our state moving forward, even leading the way.”
The bill will now go to the Senate.
Governor Roy Cooper has made more vetoes during his tenure than any other governor in our history.
The majority of those vetoes (a total of 37, approximately 65%) were filed under cover of night or over a weekend. The next bill on his desk for signature or veto is SB 116, the “Put NC Back to Work Act.”
House Majority Leader John Bell said, “On top of vetoing the most bills in North Carolina history, the Governor has made it a pattern of doing so on a Friday afternoon in an attempt to bury the news heading into the weekend. This is not leadership. The polling is clear that on both sides of the aisle people want to end the extra federal unemployment benefits and get our state back to work. Every day, I hear from local businesses who cannot find employees to fill open jobs. Just yesterday, one announced they are closing their doors for good due to labor shortages. I encourage the governor to sign this bipartisan legislation without delay.”
The NC Chamber’s President and CEO Gary Salamido also urged Governor Cooper to sign the bill, saying, “At this decisive moment for our state, every day matters for the job creators struggling to find talent and for the parents and families looking for a feasible path back to work. Senate Bill 116 provides the critical solutions we need to reinvigorate our workforce, reduce COVID-related childcare constraints on families to empower their return to a job, and end our dependence on federal programs created for a moment when jobs were not readily available across our state. The NC Chamber applauds our elected leaders who worked hard to secure this bill and we urge Governor Cooper to help expedite our economic relaunch by signing Senate Bill 116 into law.”
Today the North Carolina House approved the North Carolina Farm Act to support agriculture communities across North Carolina.
The North Carolina Farm Act of 2021-22 represents the crucial role of farming families, with various changes to laws applicable to agriculture, forestry, and the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
The Farm Act includes the following key reforms:
- Clarifies that a local government may either make decisions about establishment and modification of voluntary agricultural districts or delegate that authority to an agricultural advisory board.
- Allows local governments to grant agricultural advisory boards the authority to execute agreements with landowners necessary for enrollment of land in a voluntary agricultural district.
- Allows magistrates to waive trials for state forest rule offenses.
- Exempts fires started for cooking, warming, or ceremonial events from open burning laws.
- Modifies overtime policy for North Carolina Forest Service employees/
- Increases punishment for timber larceny and increase civil penalties for damaging timber or agricultural commodities.
- Requires timber buyers to provide a wood load ticket to sellers of certain wood products.
- Expands the laws enforced by the Department of Agriculture and consumer services law enforcement officers.
- Creates a new general permit for farms with farm digester systems.
- Requires production of electronic records for Department of Agriculture and consumer services record audits.
North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) said, “North Carolina agriculture sustains our communities, provides a source of wellness and good health to North Carolina families, and is an essential driver to the economic health of our state.”
He continued, “The General Assembly acknowledges the vital role that farmers play in our communities and we will continue to support them.”
Rep. Jimmy Dixon (R- Duplin) said, “We know that agriculture is number one in our state, and this bill is a common-sense approach to maintaining a safe, economical, sustainable supply of food in North Carolina.”
The bill is now returned to the Senate.