May 4, 2001
Issue Number 15

The Legislative Bulletin is published every Friday when the General Assembly is in session. Readership is restricted to employees of NCCBI member companies. The Bulletin is an online news service distributed by e-mail to roughly 2,500 recipients.

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Names in the news
Gov. Easley appoints three new members of the State Board of Education

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Top Stories
Weak April tax revenue widens 
state budget deficit by $61 million
Instead of an “April surprise” of unexpected revenues that would have gone a long way toward solving the state’s budget deficit, a fresh appraisal of tax revenues for April and the rest of the fourth quarter shows the deficit worsening by $61.7 million. Those numbers from the Fiscal Research Division indicate that the budget deficit, which had been put at $635.3 million, will more likely be $698 million by the end of the fiscal year. Read that story.

New poll finds 60% of voters favor a lottery
Debate over a state lottery heated up in the General Assembly this week when a pro-lottery group released a poll showing that 60 percent of voters favor a lottery and 33 percent oppose it. Of those in favor of a lottery, 43 percent said their support was strong. The poll also found that 66 percent of respondents said they had played the lottery in other states. Meanwhile, an anti-lottery group began calling voters in 17 legislative districts to play recorded messages by former governor Jim Martin and former UNC System president Bill Friday opposing a lottery. Read that story.

General Assembly could pass 500 new laws
Although roughly 2,500 pieces of legislation have been introduced so far this session of the General Assembly, only about 500 has been passed by either the House or Senate by the April 26 crossover deadline. These bills will remain eligible for consideration during the rest of the session and all could become new laws. Each one is important to some group, so we present them all. See the list of House bills and the list of Senate bills that beat the crossover deadline.

State Government News
Ashe County educator named Teacher of the Year
Carmen Wilson, a math teacher at Ashe County High School, was named the 2001-02 North Carolina Teacher of the Year at a banquet in Cary Tuesday night. Ms. Wilson will represent North Carolina in the national teacher of the year competition. Plus, she will receive a new car, thanks to the N.C. Automobile Dealers Association. Read that story.

Meanwhile . . . 
Unemployment rates decline in 10 of 11 metro areas
Funeral home director guilty of state tax evasion
State issues year's first ozone alert
DOT plans hearing on new I-40 rest area in Haywood County
NCCBI spotlights state's Northeast region

Federal Government News
Americans worked 123 days this year to pay taxes

Americans celebrated Tax Freedom Day on Thursday, according to the Tax Foundation's annual calculation. That means the nation’s taxpayers had to work from Jan. 1 to the 123rd day of the year before earning enough money to pay for federal, state and local government taxes. Read that story.

Meanwhile . . . 
Raleigh, Fayetteville awarded EPA brownfield grants
Length of hospitalizations declines markedly
Cost of employee benefits rises to 36.8% of payroll

NCCBI Membership News
Check the NCCBI calendar of events to see which ones you should attend.
NCCBI offers a seminar to train business people how to improve your media relations skills, including how to conduct yourself during a TV interview.
Download your free copy of NCCBI's Guide to the 2001 Legislature.


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