Legislative Updates April 4 2021

 

Legislative Updates

 

 

H.B. 36 Protect Those Who Serve and Protect Act

This bill has been passed by the House and is currently working its way through the Senate. Its primary purpose is to better protect law enforcement officers, armed forces and national guard members, and other emergency personnel. The bill would criminalize the discharge of a weapon aimed at any unoccupied emergency vehicle, making such acts punishable by a Class H felony. North Carolina law already criminalizes shooting a projectile at an occupied emergency vehicle.

The bill would also criminalize pointing a laser at any law enforcement officers while in performance of their duties, the head or face of any individual or a law enforcement animal, and depending on the offense, is punishable by either an infraction, Class A1 misdemeanor or a Class I felony. 

The primary sponsors of the bill are Rep. Kelly Hastings (R-Cleveland, Gaston), Rep. Jason Saine (R-Lincoln), Rep. Carson Smith (R-Columbus, Pender), and Rep. Kristen Baker (R-Cabarrus).

S.B. 321 Amend N.C. Controlled Substances Act

As the opioid crisis continues, North Carolina Republicans in the Senate have set out to amend the current controlled substances act to broaden criminal liability for, among other things, the sale of fentanyl derivatives. Such action is necessary to protect citizens from drug producers and dealers trying to circumvent laws by altering the deadly substance’s chemical makeup. The amendments proposed would, among other things, broaden culpability to include any modified versions of fentanyl. 

We applaud Republican-led efforts to a meaningful advancement in the fight against the opioid epidemic. The bill was passed by the Senate on April 1st and will be sent to the House. 

Primary Senate Sponsors: Sen. Tom McInnis (R-Anson, Moore, Richmond, Scotland); Sen. Michael Lazzara (R-Jones, Onslow); Sen. Chuck Edwards (R-Buncombe, Henderson, Transylvania).

H.B. 358 Save Women’s Sports Act

North Carolina is now the 30th state to introduce the Save Women’s Sports Act. House Bill 358 seeks to prevent transgender “women” from competing in middle, high school; and college athletics. Specifically, the legislation would require all public schools in North Carolina to designate athletic teams as male, female or co-ed.

As of now, the rules governing transgender athletes are vague and unsustainable.

The North Carolina High School Athletic Association currently allows men who identify as female to participate in womens’ athletics, provided they fill out a form. 

“Males cannot participate in female sports,” said Rep. Mark Brody (R-District 55). “I do not want to wait until biological females are pushed out of female sports, and all of their records are broken, scholarships lost, and benefits of excelling are diminished before this is addressed.

H.B. 418 Threaten LEO or Correctional Officer

Unfortunately, law enforcement and correctional officers often receive credible threats to their safety from criminals. Given the nature of their occupation, these folks purposefully insert themselves into situations fraught with danger and dangerous individuals. Those dangerous individuals often make threats to kill or seriously harm that officer or his family.

Under this bill, anyone who makes a threat against an officer is guilty of a Class A1 misdemeanor. Anyone who makes a threat against anyone, including the officer’s family, in retaliation to an officer doing his job, would be guilty of a Class I felony.

The notable efforts put forth by the legislators on this bill would better ensure the safety of those who serve and protect our communities. The primary sponsors of the bill are Representatives John Faircloth (R-Guilford), Allen McNeil (R-Moore, Randolph), Dudley Greene (R-Avery, McDowell, Mitchell), and Charles W. Miller (R-Brunswick, New Hanover).

S.B. 377 Remove Foreign Citizens from Voting Rolls

Sponsored by Senators Jim Burgin (R-Harnett, Johnston, Lee), Joyce Krawiec (R-Davie, Forsyth), and Norman W. Sanderson (R-Carteret, Craven, Pamlico), this bill seeks to remove noncitizen voters from the voting rolls. 

The bill would require each Clerk of Court to send a list of individuals who were potential jurors but were excluded due to their noncitizenship to the State Board of Elections every quarter. The Board would then strike those voters from the list. 

As Democrats continue to push their attempts to water down election integrity, these Republican Senators have proposed a commonsense method to secure our polls against interference. The right to vote is the sacred keystone in any democracy. Every time someone who is not legally entitled to vote casts a ballot; it dilutes the votes of legal voters. As our nation is faced with the continuous threat posed by voter fraud, Republicans continue to fight to protect our electoral process.

H.B. 453 To Protect Against Discrimination of Human Life

This bill prohibits discrimination based on innate characteristics, such as a human being’s race, sex, or genetic characteristics. The State of North Carolina maintains a compelling interest in preventing abortion from becoming a tool of modern-day eugenics. The inherent right against discrimination based on race, sex, or genetic abnormality is protected in federal and state laws. The 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination based on race and disability. Notwithstanding, unborn human beings are continuously discriminated against and deprived of life. The bill would prohibit discrimination based on the following:

  1. The actual or presumed race or racial makeup of the unborn child.

  2. The sex of the unborn child. Sex-selection abortions continue to occur, and victims are overwhelmingly female.

  3. The presumption of down syndrome. Unborn children perceived as “disabled” or handicapped” are routinely aborted in the United States.

“All babies, born and unborn, have intrinsic dignity, worth, and should be protected from the practice of discriminatory eugenic abortion,” said bill sponsor, Rep. Pat McElraft (Carteret, Jones)

“Children shouldn’t have to pass a genetic test to earn the right to be born.” said Rep John Bradford (Mecklenburg)

“If we truly want to eradicate discrimination predicated on race or disability, we must ensure that this protection begins in the womb,” said Rep. Dean Arp (Union).

Federal Legislative Update