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League Bulletin

September 27, 2019

​WHAT HAPPENED: The Sept. 11 veto override vote in the House continued rippling out​ with disputes between caucus leaders in the General Assembly, but it was a  pretty light week in legislative business for cities and towns. 
WHAT IT MEANS: Overall, downtime was the plan, as we reported last week. Chamber leaders had cited the strenuous workload on lawmakers recently, with big items like redistricting to address, and the need for some bench time. ​
ON TAP: A little more. Votes aren't scheduled in either chamber for Monday, the Insider State Government News Service points out. On Tuesday, a new legislator will be sworn-in: Perrin Jones, an anesthesiologist taking over the District 9 seat in the state House following former seat-holder Greg Murphy's transition to Congress​
THE SKINNY: While it was a lighter week in our corner, we've had the chance to look back at what's happened over the course of the 2019 long session of the General Assembly in our recently released End-of-Session Bulletin, a robust document capturing all the legislation (so far) of interest to cities and towns. We'll update it when lawmakers gavel out for the year. One thing still outstanding: a complete state budget. Read on for more news of interest to cities and towns. 

The League is looking for individuals to form league policies and advocate for them​ through Legislative Action Committees (General Government, Tax & Finance, Planning & Environment LAC) and a Regulatory Action Committee (RAC). The LAC and RAC ​consider and develop the proposed legislative agenda and related core value issues for the League. These committees recommend the advocacy agenda to the Board of Directors, which in turn proposes it to the full membership for discussion, debate and approval at the Advocacy Goals Conference​. This process begins in even-numbered years in advance of the legislative “long session” in odd-numbered years. Each committee term lasts for two years and members may serve a maximum of two consecutive terms on a committee.

These committees are a vital part of the policy decision making. We hope you will consider serving on one. It's a great way to be involved in League advocacy efforts. To apply, please fill out an interest form by Friday, Nov. 1. If you have any questions, please contact Karen Waddell at (919) 715-0950 or​.

Grammy Award-winning artist Common and cities-focused author Peter Kageyama are booked to keynote this year's City Summit​, the National League of Cities' annual conference that draws local government officials and supporters from across the country for a better tomorrow. It's set for Nov. 20-23 in San Antonio, Texas.  "The conference will offer local officials education for professional development, discussions on common challenges and new trends affecting cities and proven best practices that will improve local communities," says NLC. "Exclusive to NLC’s fall conference, mobile workshops offer city leaders a chance to see the success of peers during guided tours of noteworthy municipal projects." You can learn more about the 100-plus educational sessions and networking opportunities, and so much more, at Registration is open

The governor on Tuesday signed SB 691 Emergency Operating Funds for Utilities, allowing funds from the Wastewater Reserve and the Drinking Water Reserve to provide grants to the Local Government Commission. The goal would be to help fund operating deficits of a public water or wastewater system that has been taken over by the Local Government Commission or which has had its charter revoked by a local act of the General Assembly. The very next day, in an emergency meeting, the State Water infrastructure Authority approved emergency funding for the Town of Eureka in the amount of $200,000. A law passed in June suspended the town's charter for five years and gave the state treasurer control of its assets. “While this action provides emergency funding for Eureka, there are many other North Carolina communities that are struggling with paying for the costs of maintaining water infrastructure and providing vital water services,” the N.C. Division of Environmental Quality said.  The plight of water and wastewater systems in rural North Carolina is increasingly in discussion around the state as populations and marketplaces have continued shifting from rural to urban areas, leaving smaller communities without the funding to support the water/wastewater systems they need.