Thursday, September 4, 2008

2008 North Carolina Legislative Summary: Bills Report

It is not just about the budget during the short session.  There were also several bills that passed this session that were signed by the governor that have a direct effect on people with developmental and cognitive disabilities and their families.  Here is a brief review of those bills.

SB 1498: Study Disabled Access to UNC Facilities.
(2008 Study Bill)

This bill would direct the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina study the accessibility of its facilities to people with severe physical disabilities seeking basic access to higher education within the state university system.

HB 12: Students Ineligible for Special Education Protection
(Session Law 2008-90)

This bill protects a narrow group of eligible students with disabilities from long-term suspensions when schools fail to identify them and their performance and behavior clearly establish the need for such services.

SB 1892: Autism Committee Recommendations (Session Law 2008-83)

Changes to Silver Alert:
An important part of this bill is the changes to the Silver Alert System. Silver Alert was passed as law last session and was to be used for people with dementia or cognitive disabilities over the age of 18 who are reported missing. This program is very similar to the Amber Alert system. This new law will remove the 18year old requirement.

The School of Government, in consultation with the Autism Society of NC, TEACCH, and appropriate legal associations and organizations, shall study the various groups in the judicial system for which additional training may be necessary on the legal issues and appropriate responses to persons with autism.

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