Over the past two weeks two important pieces of legislation have been enacted into law. Senate Bill 208: Labor Law Changes, makes various changes to the labor laws of North Carolina that affect the laws governing you as an employer in the following ways all:
- Requires employers to notify employees, in writing, at least one pay period prior to changes in wages
- Provides that the maximum penalty for employers who violate record keeping requirements must not exceed $2,000 per violation
- Clarifies, that medical records obtained by the Department of Labor must be kept separate from an investigation except as necessary to support the issuance of a citation in an OSHANC enforcement proceeding
- Makes clarifying changes to statutes addressing youth employment certificates and payment to separated employees
House Bill 602: UNC Legislative Priorities/ HR Reports, is an omnibus bill that provides greater flexibility to institutions within the UNC system to manage administrative issues within the system. Highlights of the legislation include:
- Exempt’s finance, business office, and auditor professionals of UNC from most provisions of the NC Human Resources Act; Consolidates and eliminates certain reports.
- Gives the UNC Board of Governors temporary authority to implement an early retirement incentive program.
- Provides statutory authority for the UNC President to approve a reduction in force without approval of any other State agency.
- And provides temporary authority of the UNC Board of Governors to use non-state funds to provide State Health Plan premium payments for certain employees placed on emergency temporary furloughs.
Lastly, House Bill 951: Modernizing Energy Generation, moved forward last week and received House approval. The bill advances North Carolina’s “All of the Above” energy strategy while ensuring a balanced energy transition in North Carolina at a pace that ensures continued reliability and affordability. A few important provisions in the bill would:
- Require retirement of certain coal-fired generating facilities: the Allen Plant located in Gaston County, Marshall Units 1 and 2 located in Catawba County, the Roxboro Plant located in Person County, Cliffside Unit 5 located in Cleveland County, and the Mayo Plant located in Person County.
- Assign designated replacement resources for each of the retiring coal-fired generating facilities
- Require an electric public utility to use bond financing for $500,000,000 in certain energy transition costs related to retirement of units at the Allen Plant, Marshall Units 1 and 2, the Roxboro Plant, Cliffside Unit 5, and the Mayo Plant. This financing mechanism would not create any indebtedness for the State or any of its political subdivisions.
House Bill 951 has since passed the House and has been sent to the North Carolina Senate for their consideration. We will continue to monitor this issue and provide you with updates as the discussions move forward.
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