Every two years, in the months preceding a long session of the General Assembly, the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners engages in a process to determine the legislative goals it should pursue in the best interest of the counties. The process is thorough, deliberative, and time intensive. It is designed to allow for input from as many county commissioners, county officials, and stakeholders as possible. By maximizing participation from so many of the organization’s members, it is possible to reach agreement on goals that are important to all members of this diverse organization.
The process begins with counties submitting their legislative goal proposals, which are voted on by county boards and affirmed through a resolution from the county Board Chair. Goals submissions are received from May through early September.
After the goals submission deadline, all eligible goal submissions are referred to the appropriate NCACC Steering Committee with jurisdiction over the issue. The Steering Committees review the referred goals and provide recommendations to the Legislative Goals Committee. The Legislative Goals Committee considers each goal and determine which goals will be forwarded to the NCACC Board of Directors for consideration.
The NCACC Board of Directors considers and approves a package of recommended goals, making any necessary technical corrections. The Board advances the goals package for consideration by all 100 counties at a culminating event – NCACC’s Legislative Goals Conference. Each member county appoints a voting delegate to participate in the conference to vote on goals and rank them in priority order.
This year, the NCACC Legislative Goals Conference will be held in November and the NCACC legislative agenda will be finalized by early December, in advance of the 2023 short session.
NCACC developed a similar process for counties to submit federal goals, which guide advocacy outreach to members of U.S. Congress, including members of North Carolina’s Congressional Delegation and other federal partners. Federal goals also support NCACC members with their involvement in the National Association of Counties (NACo). Submitting federal goal proposals is a great way to complement state goals, longstanding goals, guiding principles, and demonstrate support for the NCACC Presidential Initiative.
If you have any questions about the process or help developing a goal, please contact Amber Harris.