United States: Guests Laura DeVivo and Angel Sams Explain The N.C. General Assembly's Recently-Concluded And Critical "Crossover" Period

The "crossover" period has just ended in the North Carolina General Assembly, which is an inflection point for pending bills in each session.  Here with a wonderful explanation of what "crossover" means, both technically and practically, are my colleagues, Womble Carlyle lobbyists Laura DeVivo and Angel Sams.  Angel and Laura have their own excellent blog on our Firm's website, Keeping Up With Jones Street.  It's informative, entertaining, and strategically critical.

Laura and Angel, have at it:

Crossover is a nutty time on Jones Street where the House and Senate are killing themselves to pass their bills to the other chamber to beat a made-up deadline.  It is actually a date in the House Rules by which certain Senate Bills must be received by the House and a date in the Senate Rules by which certain House Bills must be received by the Senate.  The Rules are adopted in a resolution by the respective chamber at the beginning of each legislative session.  The House and Senate Rules agreed on the date, April 30, 2015 in this case. 

Generally the bills subject to crossover deal with substantive policy with no impact on state appropriations and/or don't contain new taxes or fees.  The crossover rule is interpreted by the leadership in every case but is fairly consistently applied.  Bills that contain a new tax or fee, a state appropriation, handle redistricting matters or adjournment resolutions are not subject to crossover.  Many bills subject to appropriations are rolled into the state budget, and those containing new fees and taxes end up in omnibus bills on the subject.  Bills that are subject to crossover but are not received by the other chamber by the crossover deadline are dead for the remainder of the biennium.

Both crossover rules are below:


SENATE RULE 41. Crossover bill deadline. – In order to be eligible for consideration by the Senate during the 2015 or 2016 Regular Sessions of the 2015 General Assembly, all House bills other than (i) those required to be referred to the Committee on Finance or the Committee on Appropriations/Base Budget by Rule 42, (ii) those establishing districts for Congress or State or local entities, or (iii) adjournment resolutions must be received and read on the floor of the Senate as a message from the House no later than Thursday, May 7, 2015, provided that a message from the House received by the next legislative day stating that a bill has passed its third reading and is being engrossed shall comply with the requirements of this rule and provided that the House accepts Senate bills ordered engrossed on the next legislative day.  [The Senate Rule date was amended by a later resolution to April 30th.]

HOUSE RULE 31.1(h)  - In order to be eligible for consideration by the House during the first Regular Session, all Senate bills other than finance or appropriations bills that would be required to be re-referred to the Appropriations or Finance Committee under Rule 38 or adjournment resolutions must be received and read on the floor of the House as a message from the Senate no later than Thursday, April 30, 2015; provided that a message from the Senate received by the next legislative day stating that a bill has passed its third reading and is being engrossed shall comply with the requirements of this subsection and provided that the Senate has a similar rule.

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