Grindstaff participates in NCACC Legislative Goals Conference
Mitchell County Board of Commissioners vice chair Matthew “Vern” Grindstaff this past week joined voting delegates from counties throughout the state to determine the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners’ legislative priorities for the 2019-2020 biennium session of the North Carolina General Assembly.
Gov. Roy Cooper delivered keynote remarks and thanked county commissioners for their commitment to public service.
NCACC President-Elect and Yadkin County Commissioner Kevin Austin presided over the two-day conference, which was Jan. 10-11. Grindstaff was sent to serve as a voting delegate to the conference to debate, amend, offer new proposals and cast votes on the Association’s guiding principles and legislative priorities, which guide advocacy efforts at the General Assembly.
The conference is the final step in a comprehensive process, which gives each county a voice in shaping NCACC’s legislative agenda. Austin explained this inclusive approach.
“Our process offers an opportunity for all our counties to participate,” Austin said. “These goals come from counties all across the state and have been vetted by their boards before they come to the Association. It’s a grassroots effort, which involves all 100 counties.
NCACC’s Top 5 Priority Goals for 2019-20
1) Seek legislation, funding, and other efforts to expand digital infrastructure/broadband capability to the unserved and under-served areas and residents of the state.
2) Seek additional revenue sources, including a statewide bond and lottery proceeds, to equitably address statewide public school and community college capital challenges.
3) Support efforts to preserve and expand the existing local revenue base of counties and authorize local option revenue sources already given to any other jurisdiction to all counties. Oppose efforts to divert to the state, fees or taxes currently allocated to the counties or to erode existing county revenue streams.
4) Support provision of state resources to ensure county ability to provide essential public health, behavioral health and social services, with specific consideration to the challenges of incarcerated persons, the continued county role in behavioral health governance, and programs addressing substance use disorder, throughout Medicaid transformation.
5) Seek legislation to repeal the statutory authority under N.C. Gen. Stat. 115C-431(c) that allows a local school board to file suit against a county board of commissioners over appropriations to the local board of education’s capital outlay fund.