The Senate will come to order. The sergeant at arms will close the doors. Members will go to their seats. Members and guests in the gallery please silence all electronic devices. Leading the Senate in prayer is the Reverand Peter Milner, Senate Chaplain. Members and guests in the gallery, please stand. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Let's pray together. Gracious God, Heavenly Father. Thank you for the warmth of this building. We pray for those that are without it right now. We give you thanks for large things as well like democracy and we pray for those who are without it right now. We come before you and we ask that you in your blazing face would pierce us with the shafts of your burning love. You, oh God, are a God of love and Lord, you are also holy. Your holiness is our judge and your wounds are our salvation. Lord, thank you for salvation. May you send us out to serve the people of this land whether in Bertie County or Cherokee County or Harnett County or Wake County because we're blessed to be at your service and we're blessed to be gathered here today to do this great work. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Apodaca is recognized for a motion. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. President, the journal of Wednesday, February 18th 2015 has been examined and is found to be correct. I move that the Senate dispense with the reading of the Journal and that it stand approved as written. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Without objection the journal for February 18th stands approved as written. Senators, we have leaves of absence today granted for Senators Woodard, Wells, Bingham. We do have a nurse of the day with us today. Our nurse is Stephanie Leach from Raleigh, North Carolina. Nurse Leach, please stand and be recognized. Thank you for your service to the Senate today. [Applause] Senators we have one item on our calendar for today, public bill third reading roll call, Senate Bill 15. The clerk will read. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senate Bill 15, Unemployment Insurance Law Changes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Rucho is recognized to speak to the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you Mr. President and members of the Senate. We did have a chance to review that bill yesterday and there was a question from Senator Smith-Ingram that I may not have been able to answer clearly enough, but I surely would like to make sure she knows all the facts before she makes any rash statements like we are trying to hit somebody or punish somebody when they're down because that is far from the truth, but the question that was about the issue of the two contacts on separate days, that's the original proposal and that was coming forward was five contacts over any number of days per week. The original actually was damaging to recipients because it said if you did more than one contact on one day, you could do two, you could do three, you could do five on that one day, it disqualified you from benefits. So what we are trying to say is you could do five over any number of days, you could do five over one day you could do five over five days, but the fact of the matter is this is more protection for those individuals who would've lost qualification or been disqualified from receiving the unemployment benefits and I hope now that she understands that, that she may retract the very negative comments. I'll stand for any additional questions. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is there any further discussion or debate? Senator Smith-Ingram, for what purpose do you rise?
To address Senator Rucho's clarification. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Do you want to speak to the bill, Senator. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Good. You have the floor to speak to the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. I'm sorry. I came in on the tail end of that, I was meeting with the President Pro Tempore. I will say that if you were offended or if I hurt your feelings by that statement then that was not my intention, so let me apologize to you face to face. You have clarified one or two things for me, and the bill is not all bad, but there's never a one size fits all. When you look at the eight counties that I represent and people were looking on a map yesterday. Where is Tyrrel County? Well, I can tell you Tyrrel County is east of I 95. It is our smallest county. There are 638 students in the school system. 17% of the population in Tyrrel County have access to the internet. Beyond that, Tyrrel County does not have an employment agency. Of the eight counties that I represent, North Hampton, Tyrrel, Washington Counties do not have employment agencies. Beyond that, they don't have public transportation. If I were receiving these benefits and I was unemployed and I did not have a car, I did not have internet access, how would I make those five contacts? When I read the bill and I read it thoroughly, I didn't see suggestions as to what those five contacts would be. I wish I could pass a bill on this floor or walk a day in the shoes of the people you're going to affect when you implement legislation, so with all due respect, sir, I apologize if you were offended, but at the same time I have to represent the people that I serve who do not have the access that you have or maybe people in the area that you represent have. Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Tillman, for what purpose do you rise? [SPEAKER CHANGES] To speak on the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Tillman has the floor to speak on the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Smith-Ingram, you've done something I have not been able to do in 14 years, you've hurt Senator Rucho's feelings. I didn't know he had any. I didn't know he had any. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Any further discussion or debate. Hearing none, the question before the Senate is the passage of Committee Substitute to Senate Bill 15 on it third reading. All in favor will vote aye, opposed will vote no. Five seconds will be allowed for the voting, the clerk will record the vote. 40 having voted in the affirmative and 6 in the negative, the Committee Substitute to Senate Bill 15 passes its third reading and it will be sent to the House. Do we have any notices or announcements? Senator Smith-Ingram, FYI, your microphone is on. Thank you. Senator Daniel, for what purpose do you rise? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Point of personal privilege at the appropriate time. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Daniel, you have the floor for a point of personal privilege. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. President. Members of the Senate for those of you who didn't know or weren't aware, my congressman or former congressman Cass Ballinger passed away yesterday. He had been a member of the House of Representatives and the North Carolina Senate prior to going to the US Congress. For me personally he meant a lot to me because he gave me one of the best opportunities of my life. In 1987 Congressman Ballinger during his first term in Congress appointed me to be able to attend the United States Military Academy which was, you know, an experience that has shaped the entire rest of my adult life so I just hope that today, Senator Berger, maybe we can adjourn in honor of Congressman Ballinger and had talked to Senator Wells who Cass Ballinger resides in his district. He wasn't able to be here today, so I told him that I would speak in honor of Congressman Ballinger and he certainly was a dedicated public servant and will be missed in my area of the state. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Any other notices or announcements. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. President. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Pate, for what purpose do you rise? [SPEAKER CHANGES] To make an announcement. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Pate has the floor for an announcement. [SPEAKER CHANGES] This announcement concerns the Senate Select Committee on Nominations, pursuant to
...Senate rule thirty-one, the president pro tempore of the Senate hereby establishes the Senate Select Committee on Nominations and appoints the following senators as committee members: Senator Tom Apodaca, Chair; Senator Bob Rucho, Vice Chair; Senator Buck Newton, Vice Chair; Senator Harry Brown; Senator Dan Blue; Senator Tamara Barringer; Senator Ralph Hise; Senator Gladys Robinson; Senator Jerry Tillman; Senator Tommy Tucker; Senator Trudy Wade; and Senator Mike Woodard. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Senator. And Senators, I was remiss at mentioning Senator Tucker has an excused absence for today as well. Any other notices or announcements? Any other business to come before the Senate? If not, the Chair recognizes Senator Berger for a motion. Senator Pate. For what purpose do you rise? [SPEAKER CHANGES] For a motion. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Pate has the floor for a motion. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. President, I move that the Senate do now adjourn in memory of former Congressman Cass Ballenger subject to the standard stipulations set forth in Senate rule 24.1 to reconvene on Monday, February 23, 2015 at 4pm. [SPEAKER CHANGES] The motion is that the Senate do now adjourn subject to the standard stipulations and in honor of Congressman Cass Ballenger to reconvene Monday, February 23 at 4pm. Seconded by Senator Krawiec. All in favor say aye. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Aye. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Opposed no. The ayes have it. The Senate stands... Mr. Apodaca. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just a quick announcement. It will be a skeletal session on Monday. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Skeleton session on Monday. Senate stands adjourned.