As North Carolina faces the COVID-19 crisis with it’s impact on our economy, families, jobs and every aspect of our lives, the John Locke Foundation responds by looking at policy concerns, offering suggestions and solutions. All five of our COVID-19 policy documents have been released and are available on our website.  For your convenience I’ve them included here with a brief summary of recommendations for your consideration. Details are available in the briefs.

North Carolina’s COVID-19 Response: Regulation and Red Tape

  1. Repeal or suspend anti-“gouging” law
  2. Suspend occupational licensing and rethink licensing going forward
  3. Give extensions for expiring driver’s licenses, expiring vehicle registrations and other nonessential services that require in-person visits and standing in lines at government offices
  4. Repeal NC’s Certificate of Need (CON) laws

North Carolina’s COVID-19 Response: Workforce and the Economy

  1. Match the IRS deadline for filing taxes
  2. Do not match the amount of assistance available from the federal government; exercise fiscal restraint
  3. Encourage private and individual participation in relief and recovery.
  4. Set aside $1 B of the $2.2 B unspent revenues to shore up revenues next year and use the remainder for immediate and short term relief.
  5. Offer a general tax refund with extra help for families and small corporations.

North Carolina’s COVID-19 Response: K-12 Education –

  1. Increase communication about child nutrition options available
  2. Allow school districts calendar flexibility to make up time or restructure attendance requirements.
  3. If schools are closed for more than 3 to 4 weeks, waive testing requirements for the 2019-2020 school year, suspend initiatives tied to test scores and establish alternative criteria for awarding bonus pay.
  4. Use online learning as a tool recognizing that there are some concerns and encourage parents to encourage kids to read. A lot.

North Carolina’s COVID-19 Response: State Budget – 

  1. Put one-half of the $2.26 B unreserved cash balance aside for anticipated revenue shortfalls next year; use the remaining $1 B for immediate and short term relief and recovery efforts.
  2. Safeguard unreserved funds so people don’t face higher taxes in addition to the other impacts on families, businesses and the economy during and after the Covid-19 crisis passes.
  3. Consider dismantling regulations that are costly to enforce in order to free up money for direct assistance, limiting the virus’ spread and treatment.

North Carolina’s COVID-19 Response: Health Care – 

  1. Recognize out of state licenses for qualified medical providers. Allow out of state physicians to use telemedicine in NC.
  2. Grant pharmacists more authority to administer medication and report COVID-19 tests.
  3. Grant nurse practitioners full practice authority and allow other health care professionals to practice to the full extent of their training.
  4. Repeal Certificate of Need (CON) laws.
  5. Eliminate burdensome regulations within the Medicaid program.

In addition we are providing daily updates on Carolina Journal and more opinions right here on The Locker Room.

No hype, no panic, just solid ideas based on research, data and facts, as you’ve come to rely on from JLF. We’ll get through this together.