Temporary Spending Measure Likely to Become Law, With or Without Governor | Beaufort County Now | A bill allowing federal funds to continue flowing to North Carolina hasn’t earned Gov. Roy Cooper’s signature yet, but one political analyst said it would be wise for the governor to let it become law. | governor, roy cooper, temporary spending, new bill, federal funds, state budget, july 30, 2019

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Temporary Spending Measure Likely to Become Law, With or Without Governor

Publisher's note: This post appears here courtesy of the Carolina Journal, and written by Lindsay Marchello.

Gov. Roy Cooper in June 2018. | Photo: CJ files

    A bill allowing federal funds to continue flowing to North Carolina hasn't earned Gov. Roy Cooper's signature yet, but one political analyst said it would be wise for the governor to let it become law.

    Weeks have passed since Cooper vetoed the biennial budget bill. Negotiations have stalled on a compromise between the governor and the Republican-led General Assembly. As Republican leaders work on whipping up votes for a veto override - which must include some Democratic lawmakers to succeed - Cooper is busy making sure his party sustains the veto.

    State government is still able to operate without a new budget. Spending has reverted back to previous levels, but new items including teacher and state employee raises won't become reality without legislative action.

    The General Assembly recently passed legislation to address some of the shortfalls caused by the budget impasse. House Bill 961, or Ensuring the Authorization of Federal Funds, is a stopgap measure to make sure the state can still draw down federal funds in the form of block grants while the budget stalemate continues. Under the bill, federal block grants for health and human services, agriculture, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Clean Water Trust Fund, and the suicide prevention hotline are funded.

    Now the ball is in the governor's court. Both chambers of the General Assembly passed H.B. 961 by unanimous votes.

    Cooper has three options: he can veto the legislation, sign the bill, or let the bill become law without his signature.

    "I can't imagine he will veto it, since it was passed unanimously in both chambers," Andy Taylor, a political science professor at North Carolina State University, said. "I'm not sure from his own perspective how it would help him if he did veto."

    Taylor said it's not clear who will benefit or be harmed the most from a drawn out budget battle, and signing H.B. 961 into law won't necessarily tip the scales in either direction.

    Cooper vetoed the $24 billion budget on June 28. Since then the governor has engaged in a back-and-forth battle with Republican legislative leaders over a compromise budget. One of the major points of contention has been Medicaid expansion. While Cooper wants to expand Medicaid, Republican lawmakers are largely against the idea.

    Taylor said the General Assembly has thrown Cooper a bone regarding Medicaid by putting House Bill 655 on the calendar. H.B. 655 would give about 500,000 residents Medicaid coverage, but it includes work requirements and adds premiums to the coverage. Although the House hasn't voted on the measure, Taylor said it might signal to Cooper's team that there is some buckling in the General Assembly's stand against Medicaid expansion.

    "I don't really see [H.B. 961] changing the fundamental dynamics of this standoff," Taylor said.

    A bill can become law if the governor doesn't sign it within 10 days. But Taylor said it might be advantageous for Cooper to take the opportunity to make a statement while signing H.B. 961 into law.

    "If I was advising Cooper, I'd say, 'Go ahead and sign it and say this is essentially what I'm trying to do with Medicaid expansion.'" Taylor said.

    Cooper could hold a news conference on signing H.B. 961, Taylor said, and make the argument that he's trying to get federal dollars released for North Carolina.

    Cooper's office did not respond to a request for comment on this story.


Latest Op-Ed & Politics

Mairead McArdle writes for National Review Online about one high-profile Republican senator’s response to the second impeachment of Donald Trump.
A Texas man who took part in the Capitol riots earlier this month has been hit with new charges related to him allegedly threatening to “assassinate” the radically liberal Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY).
Today, America's second Fake Impeachment of Donald J. Trump, just days before he leaves office, may speak more about those Impeaching the President than he who is indicted.
Days after leaving office, former President Donald Trump has reportedly floated the idea of forming his own political party.
On Monday night, GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell declared that his battle to keep the Senate filibuster in place had been won.
We will offer this allotment of three with more to come; some old, most new, but all quite informative, and, moreover, necessary to understanding that in North Carolina, there is a wiser path to govern ourselves and our People.


Cindy McCain, the widow of the late Republican Senator John McCain, has broken her silence after being censored by the Arizona GOP for supporting Joe Biden over Donald Trump in the last presidential election.
In a letter the local directors spell out the shortcomings of the state's mismanagement of the supply of vaccines
N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein wants lawmakers to use millions won from a settlement with Dish Network for violating telemarketing laws to expand internet access for students, but legislative leaders are so far non-committal on the proposal.
Vivek Saxena reports for BizPac Review about the reaction among unions to President Biden‘s first actions in office.
The Supreme Court tossed two lawsuits accusing former President Donald Trump of violating the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution on Monday, ending a roughly four-year legal battle over the former president’s businesses.


So much is made of the Cancel Culture, which is as real as Trump Derangement Syndrome; however, the Impeachment Culture, as an offshoot of this Cancel Culture, has NOW won the day for the religiously Woke.


Back to Top