From staff reports
May 23, 2014
Richmond County’s public librarians and members of a veterans group went to Raleigh this week to share their views with state lawmakers on issues and legislation.
Sandhills Regional Library System staffers visited Richmond County’s lawmakers on Tuesday and members of Rockingham’s American Legion Post 147 stopped in on Wednesday.
Directors and staff from Sandhills libraries in Richmond, Moore, Anson, Hoke and Montgomery counties accompanied Jesse Gibson, the library system’s director. The group told legislators that libraries build communities through supporting work force development, promoting literacy and lifelong learning, connecting people and resources, partnering with local organizations and bridging the information divide.
The American Legion’s Jeff Joyner and Carlton Hawkins thanked the delegation for laws passed in the 2013 long session dealing with veterans’ concerns.
Joyner, who is currently North Carolina’s American Legion Department Legislative Commission chairman , said there were four main pieces of legislation of importance.
House Bill 322 allows the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles to waive the skills test portion of the commercial driver license application for veterans and members of the military who meet certain qualifications.
Senate Bill 50 extends the public records exception for military discharge documents from 50 years to 80 years.
SB 402 is a budget provision to ensure that $4.8 million of the state’s community college system budget will be used for the Back-to-Work Program, a retraining program focused on unemployed and underemployed North Carolinians, military veterans and N.C. National Guard members.
HB 19 strengthens the law prohibiting disorderly conduct at a funeral , memorial service or processional route.
American Legion posts in the state are members of the N.C. Veterans Council, which sponsored the visit in Raleigh for representatives of all veterans organizations.
The council continues to lobby for other efforts on veterans’ behalf, Joyner said.