NCHBA EVP Mike Carpenter and Legislative Lobbyist Steven Webb stop to speak with Rep. Jonathan Jordan (R-Ashe, Watauga) and Tammie Pruitt-Coffey, EO of the Ashe/Alleghany HBA.
NCHBA EVP Mike Carpenter and Legislative Lobbyist Steven Webb stop to speak with Rep. Jonathan Jordan (R-Ashe, Watauga) and Tammie Pruitt-Coffey, EO of the Ashe/Alleghany HBA.
Members traveled from across the state to visit with their legislators in Raleigh over the course of NCHBA’s two-day Legislative Conference in May. The annual Legislative Reception was held at the N.C. Museum of History and drew a crowd of hundreds, including legislators, other statewide elected officials and NCHBA members.

The following day, members convened at the Legislative Building to meet with representatives and senators in their offices. The North Carolina General Assembly was in the midst of its “long session,” when lawmakers wrote the state’s biennial budget and considered several important bills that are part of NCHBA’s proactive legislative agenda. 

NCHBA members lobbied representatives and senators on the following bills to be considered during the long session: 

HB 507 (Land-Use Regulatory Changes)
• This bill, which has passed both the House Regulatory Reform Committee and the Judiciary III committee, addresses the following land-use and development topics:

- Permit choice/vesting/rezoning

- Allows certain claims to be filed directly in Superior Court without going to Board of Adjustment

- No estoppels effect when challenging unlawful conditions

- Attorneys’ fees for defending against illegal local government actions

- Refines performance guarantee reforms of 2015

- Limits illegal conditions on conditional zoning and in special or conditional use permits

- No grandfathering of inspections prohibited by S.L. 2013-118

- DOT driveway regulations apply to city-maintained public roads

HB 252 (Building Code Regulatory Reform)
• This bill, which has been heard and unanimously passed by the Senate Commerce and Insurance Committees, would both refine and clarify several provisions in legislation that NCHBA sough and passed in 2015, as well as enact several new provisions. 

- No grandfathering of inspections prohibited by S.L. 2013-118

- Provides more flexibility for field inspection of building component

- No additional certification required by a licensed engineer or architect for previously certified component or element

- City and County inspection departments to create informal internal review

- Ensures that all relevant codes are reviewed by residential committee of Building Code Council

- Allows building permit holder choice between new and old interpretation for project under construction

- Eliminates dual meter requirements for lots on septic systems

- Adds “therapeutic equine facilities” to farm building exclusion in NC Building Code.

HB 457 (Performance Guarantees/Subdivision Streets)
• This bill contains several major provisions regarding public roads.

- Creates a residual performance bond for public roads and requires NCDOT to review and accept properly completed public roads within a set timeframe.

- Allows NCDOT to accept “orphan roads” that meet most of NCDOT’s standards for acceptance.

- Requires counties to setup a database of all roads located in the county.

Clarifications to the Sales Tax on RMI Labor (SB 628)
• This bill contains almost all of the provisions sought by NCHBA concerning modifications of the sales tax on repair, maintenance, and installation (RMI) services, including:

- Clarifying the definition of remodeling

- Adding siding, decks, and patios to projects exempt from sales tax on labor

- Increasing the mixed transaction percentage from 10 percent to 25 percent (whereby no sales tax will be due if the RMI portion of the job is 25 percent or less of the total contract price for the project

- Retaining the existing law that a project that requires a building permit is by definition a capital improvement (and therefore exempt from sales tax on labor)