Regulatory dark matter is an executive agency's policies, guidelines, memos, or interpretive statements of rules that the agency then enforces as if they are the rules themselves. House Bill 361 would make any agency policy, guideline, interpretive statement, etc. implemented as a rule to be "unenforceable." The bill would require any such policy treated as a rule to be formally adopted as a rule first.
In the decade for which Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights was fully in effect, its economy far outperformed the national economy. In contrast, during the decades before and after, Colorado’s economy fell short of the nation’s. Also during the TABOR decade, Colorado taxpayers received more than $3 billion in refunds,
Over the last decade, state legislators held government growth to the rate of growth in inflation and population even while increasing spending on teacher pay and Medicaid. Their restraint made room for rainy-day savings, tax reductions, and economic growth. A constitutional Taxpayer Bill of Rights would preserve North Carolina’s positive momentum.
Debate over North Carolina’s recently proposed Taxpayer Bill of Rights will begin heating up soon. Opponents will likely try to portray Colorado’s experience in a negative light, but their major claims are easily debunked.
NC's standard in law for electricity provision is least-cost, reliable electricity at the flip of a switch. State electricity policy, however, is too often directed by "stakeholders" whose desires clash with that legal standard, to the detriment especially of poor consumers. House Bill 529 would restore and boost the state's protection of electricity consumers from unnecessarily high costs.
Under North Carolina law, absentee ballots can be delivered in person legally only by the voter or a near relative. Regardless, the North Carolina State Board of Elections requires county boards of elections to accept illegally transmitted ballots, no questions asked. Either the State Board of Elections should modify its no-questions-asked policy or the General Assembly should clarify what should be done with illegally transmitted ballots.
SB 689 would take up recent Locke recommendations for broadband expansion. It would charge broadband providers fairer rates for utility-pole attachments, including the net book value of any pole needing replacement, and expedite resolution by the NC Utilities Commission of any pole-attachment disputes.
Reforming the Emergency Management Act is about good governance, regardless of who resides in the governor’s mansion. No individual should have the power unilaterally to deprive citizens of their liberty for an extended period. Reforms would still allow for rapid responses for true emergencies.
Even though state agencies craft rules on authority given them by the General Assembly, it's very difficult for the legislature to disapprove a rule. HB 327, a bill to clarify the process by which legislators can review rules, should add the legislative rules ratification process that's worked well in Florida for over a decade.
Senate Bill 326 would stop the privatization of election funding, require absentee ballots to be returned by election day, as is required in most states, and provide funding to help people get voter IDs.
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