New Bill Would Require “Truth in Lending” Language for Government Bonds | Beaufort County Now | When a person takes out a mortgage to buy a home, there are significant “truth-in-lending” laws requiring the loan contract disclose — among other things — the interest payments that will be required.

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the John Locke Foundation. The author of this post is Brian Balfour.

    When a person takes out a mortgage to buy a home, there are significant "truth-in-lending" laws requiring the loan contract disclose — among other things — the interest payments that will be required. It only makes sense, then, that when government offers voters a bond referendum similar disclosure provisions should be in place.

    After all, voters are deciding whether or not to assume a debt they will have to repay &madsh; why shouldn't governments be held to the same standards?

    That's the reasoning behind a new bill filed this week in the North Carolina Senate. Senate Bill 265, sponsored by Todd Johnson (R-Union) and Carl Ford (R-Rowan, Stanly) would require greater transparency on bond referendums, providing voters with a clearer picture of what it is they are voting on.

    Prior to legislation signed by then-Gov. Pat McCrory in 2013, bond referendums made no mention of interest payments at all, nor any reference to the very real possibility that taxes may need to be raised to pay off the newly-issued debt. The 2013 law required bond referendums to add "plus interest" after the bond amount, as well as the phrase "additional taxes may be levied in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds."

    That bill represented significant progress for transparency on bond referendums, and SB 265 would mark a greater step in that direction by requiring more details about the bond, which include:

  • the maximum duration of the bond debt
  • the estimated total amount of interest payments
  • the amount of property tax increase that would be required to pay off the debt
  • that approval of this debt would enable the governmental unit to issue additional debt not approved by taxpayers in the future, and what amount

    In the Great Recession, we heard a lot of talk about "predatory lenders" preying on unwitting borrowers by not fully or transparently disclosing all the details of the debt. But for the longest time, governments in North Carolina have engaged in similar predatory behavior by not fully disclosing information about debt they are foisting upon taxpayers.

    SB 265 is a measure that would provide long-overdue transparency.
Go Back


Latest Op-Ed & Politics

Russia working to protect themselves and possibly destroy
Voters in Robbinsville, a tiny town in North Carolina’s last dry county, have approved the sale of beer and wine, according to unofficial results Tuesday.
The White House was forced to intervene Friday and walk back claims President Joe Biden made during a town hall event on Thursday night, admitting that the administration is “not pursuing” using the National Guard to solve the supply chain crisis
Let's be frank ... a lot of us have been leery of Facebook and its cabal of programmers, administrators, promoters, fact-checkers, and even its creator, and many have even walked away from the liberal platform.
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.
In a previous research brief, I wrote about how existing nuclear power plants produce “zero emissions while at the same time being the most reliable and lowest-cost source of electricity.”


We have reached a critical juncture in our nation’s history. As once hallowed institutions decay before our eyes, parallel structures struggle to arise.
On Tuesday, November 2, The N.C. House voted along party lines in favor of its new House election district map, while the N.C. Senate approved new congressional maps.
No longer the "friendly opposition", the Liberal "ying" to the more studious, more insightful "yang"; no, not the least bit worthy of such.
After the horrific brutality in Waukesha, Wisconsin, in which a man rammed his SUV into marchers in a Christmas parade, causing the deaths of at least six people, including a small child and injuries to scores of others, many media outlets eschewed calling what happened an attack.
Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat, has vetoed a bill to limit his powers as a governor, as well as the power of his successors.
In every state studied! Rare such research is so profound. Our education system lied to us.


The reasoning behind the bill, as laid out in the bill’s language, is that “too many North Carolina citizens have no or inadequate savings for retirement.”
In a letter sent to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt slammed the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) attempt to stop “harassment” and “intimidation” of school officials, a move that comes as parents have voiced opposition to Critical Race Theory in schools.
The hiring of a critical race theorist to teach music is yet another offering from academics at the temple of the woke. Little good it will do students or individuals and communities interested in rejecting racial prejudice.
Bless those protecting our liberties
The N.C. House passed its district map proposal during evening sessions Tuesday, Nov. 2. The Senate is expected to vote on the N.C. House district map on Thursday. Redistricting maps do not go before Governor Roy Cooper, a Democrat, driving pressure on the legislative process by opposition groups.


Back to Top