In the last two years, academics and scholars of public policy have identified North Carolina as a state with an overly
complex criminal code that can ensnare small businesses, farmers, and individuals who unknowingly fail to comply
with regulatory rules. In 2014, Professor Jeff Welty of the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Government published an article
in the North Carolina Law Review, “Overcriminalization in North Carolina”; and James Copland and Isaac Gorodetski,
directors respectively of the Center for Legal Policy and the Center for State and Local Leadership at the Manhattan
Institute for Policy Research, published a primer, “Overcriminalizing the Old North State.”
The John Locke Foundation has a long-standing interest in the Map Act, which we have criticized for being “inefficient, unfair, and unnecessary.” We have repeatedly urged the General Assembly to repeal or reform it. We have also taken a keen interest in Kirby v. NCDOT and in the legal and constitutional issues that it raises.
This paper therefore proposes a state-based REINS Act as a key sunrise provision to prevent adding unnecessary and harmful regulations to the state’s regulatory burden. It describes aspects of a REINS Act for North Carolina.
posted November 5, 2015 by Paul Bachman, Michael Head, Frank Conte
This report is an attempt to identify the scope and cost of regulations in the state of North Carolina. The state’s record is mixed in terms of regulatory burden. One prominent index ranks North Carolina fifth in the nation when it comes to business friendliness. In contrast, the John Locke Foundation’s “First in Freedom Index” ranks North Carolina 36th in “regulatory freedom.”
Between FY 2009 and FY 2014, 81 out of North Carolina’s 100 counties participated in economic development activities. Counties entered into 776 contracts worth nearly $284 million in incentives over the five-year period. Actual payments, however, totaled $144 million.
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