Paving– The North Carolina Department of Transportation is currently in the process of evaluating our Division paving needs for the 2020 season. As part of their process they are reaching out to the community for input into the process. If there are state maintained roads in your area that you would like to be considered for paving, please submit those requests no later than June 21, 2019 (contact information below).
Their selections are generally based on characteristics such as current pavement condition (potholes, cracking, etc.), traffic volumes, pavement life cycle, ride-quality, ongoing maintenance costs, surrounding contract work, and resurfacing costs. They hope to have a finalized list by September of 2019 and for the work to begin in Spring of 2020.
Please send all requests and inquires to John Rhyne by email at [email protected] or by phone at 336-747-7800.
Transportation-The N.C. Department of Transportation wants your participation in a short survey on potential impacts to transportation in North Carolina.
The survey is part of an update to NCDOT’s statewide multimodal planning project, called NC Moves 2050. Participate by June 21 to help them understand your transportation needs. Your feedback will help guide North Carolina’s future transportation policies and investments.
Thank you in advance for considering this request. If you have any questions or concerns, please email [email protected].
Day of Action– We, along with the US Chamber and Chambers across the US, urged the White House and Congress to come together and agree on funding for an infrastructure bill by participating in a social media day of action on Tuesday, May 21st. You can find our posts here and here.
Utility Regulation-The Government Affairs Committee discussed House Bill 624/Senate Bill 559 that would help reduce utility storm costs for customers, and would give the N.C. Utilities Commission additional tools to use in setting electric rates. The Government Affairs committee believes the bill aligns with the Chamber’s Legislative Agenda/Guiding Principles, and we understand the bill only enables the NCUC to use these tools if they deem them to be in the best interest of customers. We learned more than 30 other state regulatory boards have the authority to approve multi-year rate plans, a key element that could help promote and accelerate grid modernization and other systemwide improvements on behalf of customers and provide some rate predictability.
In addition to bill predictability and certainty, these measures could allow customers to benefit from quicker access to cleaner energy and attractive new technologies. For utilities, we think this legislation encourages continued collaboration with customers and stakeholders to focus investments on efficient operations and the new technologies – such as distributed energy sources and a smarter, more resilient grid – that our members want.
We understand that the proposed legislation does not raise rates. It would only allow the Utilities Commission to consider using these tools in the future, if it deems them to be in the best interests of customers, and only after an extensive public hearing process.
Parental Leave-Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No. 95, extending paid parental leave to state employees in cabinet agencies. Effective September 1, 2019, state employees of any North Carolina department, agency, board or commission under the oversight of the governor will receive eight weeks of paid parental leave after giving birth or four weeks of paid parental leave after a partner gives birth or to bond with and care for a child in the event of adoption, foster care or other legal placement of a child. Parents will receive 100 percent of their regular pay while on parental leave. Paid leave policies such as this are already offered by many private-sector companies in our region.
Paid parental leave is good for the economy, fiscally responsible, and a pragmatic way to approach employee retention. Paid parental leave removes the burden of financial insecurity from families while they care for children. It can also reduce demands on the social safety net by reducing the likelihood that working parents must apply for taxpayer-funded benefits. You can read the full Executive Order here.