North Carolina legislative session getting close to end

Christine T. Nguyen—The North State Journal
Senate President pro tem Phil Berger calls the N.C. Senate into session at the General Assembly.

RALEIGH — North Carolina legislators could soon end a legislative session that’s been marked by dealing with the COVID-19 economic downturn and challenging Gov. Roy Cooper’s orders keeping many businesses closed due to the virus.

The House and Senate scheduled floor meetings on Thursday. Senate leader Phil Berger has said he expected it to be the final day for his chamber in the regular annual session that began in April. Republicans in charge of the House also are aiming to leave for an extended period after Thursday.

The two chambers have approved distributing $1.6 billion in federal COVID-19 relief funds and could agree to move hundreds of millions more before they leave. They’ve also sent Cooper state government measures to ensure top-priority needs are covered during the next fiscal year as tax collections dwindle.

A Medicaid funding bill nearing final approval also would direct the program shift to managed care by July 2021.