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League Bulletin

July 5, 2019

​WHAT HAPPENED: A relatively light week around a July 4 day-off. The House was on break and the Senate seemed to be in wrap-up mode with most regular business behind them, though some bills are still moving.
WHAT IT MEANS: Hang on. You'll recall from last week's report that Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed the General Assembly's budget. Observers are wondering how those opposing forces might compromise, and how long it'll take. Refer to a League-prepared document that compares the governor's original budget recommendation, the House budget, Senate budget, and the compromise version between the two chambers that the governor ultimately vetoed. The plan totaled 395 pages and $24 billion.
ON TAP: The House will determine if it can override the veto. Budget talk is different this year because the General Assembly prior had a veto-proof majority and could easily put vetoed-bills into law. No longer the case, the majority party would need members of the minority party to vote with them if an override is achievable. A vote is currently on the House calendar for Monday.
THE SKINNY: Meanwhile, some bills we've been following received attention. HB 777 Various Retirement Chngs/Wastewater Reform, for instance, got initial approval in the Senate and is expected, after a final approval Monday, to head back to the House for concurrence on minor amendments. But with a light week overall, July 4 having fallen on a Thursday and extended weekends the case for so many readers this time, we'll grant you a brief Bulletin and pick back up following next week's action. If you're curious about the movement of any particular bill of interest to cities and towns, our online tracker has you covered. 

If you haven't checked out Here We Grow at, you're missing out on North Carolina's best local economic development stories. In Murphy​, it's one of community spirit over efforts to reactivate an area rail line. Thousands of people, making up a crowd that actually charted with Guiness World Records, convened at a Murphy event called "Calling the Train Home" to show the popularity of the idea. Recognizing how beneficial an excursion train is to the local economies of nearby Bryson City, N.C. and Blue Ridge, Ga., Murphy officials believe it would be a game changer for their already-vibrant local economy. "We have so many positive things happening in our town right now, and a lot of people are behind that success," Mayor Rick Ramsey said. "It’s something we will continue to build on.” Meanwhile on Here We Grow, Fayetteville and Burlington discuss their sports-venue endeavors with historical renovations and new construction, and Williamston -- named the state's first Audubon Certified Sustainable Community -- tells us about the work that went into a mile-long trail connecting the historic downtown to the Roanoke River and associated sites. Not just inviting to healthy lifestyles, it's been great for economic development as well. These stories and so many more add up for North Carolina. Take a look. What story does your community have to tell? Here We Grow isn't complete without it. Send an email to for details and login information. The site is free for League-member municipalities and is boosted in partnership with WRAL TechWire​.

Filing began at noon today (Friday) for the 2019 municipal elections. The period runs through noon July 19. “Service at the municipal level often has the most direct impact on the communities in which we live. We hope many candidates sign up to run for local office this year,” Karen Brinson Bell, executive director of the State Board of Elections, said in a press release with details​. “We also encourage eligible individuals across the state to make sure they are registered to vote in their local elections.”

Whether the 2020 Census will include a question on citizenship is unclear. Last week, we reported on the U.S. Supreme Court calling the effort to include it "contrived" in its decision rejecting the question. Now, media outlets are reporting that the Trump administration may move forward with it regardless, if there's a legal possibility. On Friday, President Trump told media he may consider an executive order among options. The issue has gone beyond one of citizenship and into concern over how complete the Census results will be if the questionnaire deters participation among some communities. Census results determine how vast amounts of federal money are allocated across localities. Complete Count Commissions have been set up across the nation to encourage as much participation as possible, with local-level officials and volunteer leaders often considered the best point people to communicate the message at home.