Monkey Business Report: ConnectNC bond ballot language edition

monkeyThe GOPe and the rest of the Raleigh cartel have just now finished their high fives and victory laps after successfully conning the people of North Carolina out of TWO BILLION DOLLARS.  But, as one astute observer pointed out to us this week, there may be a particularly smelly foreign object floating in their punchbowl.

The ballot language for this year’s bond referendum was supposed to comply with Section 4 of Session Law 2013-200 (House Bill 248), which says:

“(d) The form of the question as stated on the ballot shall be in substantially the following words: “Shall the order authorizing $ _______ bonds plus interest for (briefly stating the purpose) and providing that additional taxes may be levied in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds be approved?
[ ]YES [ ]NO””
What showed up on our ballots?:
The issuance of two billion dollars ($2,000,000,000) State of North Carolina Public Improvement Bonds constituting general obligation bonds of the State secured by a pledge of the faith and credit and taxing power of the State for the purpose of providing funds, with any other available funds, to fund capital improvements and new facilities for the State, including, without limitation, the construction and furnishing of new facilities and the renovation and rehabilitation of existing facilities for, without limitation, the University of North Carolina System, the North Carolina Community College System, water and sewer systems, the State’s National Guard, the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, attractions and parks, and the Department of Public Safety.its_mine_mine_mine
Notice what’s missing?  Interest payments and new taxes.  The ballot language we got doesn’t say anything about how the interest will be paid.  If it’s not coming out of the borrowed funds, where is it coming from in the budget?  Also, the language we got doesn’t rule out “additional taxes.” It just doesn’t mention it. It’s downplayed with a brief aside about the state’s “taxing power.”   Though, state law clearly provides authority for additional taxes to pay for the bond.

So, it looks like the vote on ConnectNC was carried out in violation of the General Statutes — which are the supreme authority for state government in North Carolina.