Choose Life Plate To Get House Vote
Special Report - June 3, 2011
On Thursday, the House Finance Committee passed HB 289Authorize Various Special Plates, a bill that would give approval to a number of new specialty license plates for North Carolina drivers, including a long awaited “Choose Life” plate. The measure will now receive a vote on the House floor. Should HB 289 become law, North Carolina drivers would finally have the opportunity to purchase a “Choose Life” specialty license plate and help raise money for the state’s Pregnancy Resource Centers (PRCs), organizations that provide services and support for women considering alternatives to abortion. Under the measure, part of the proceeds from the sale of each “Choose Life” plate will be directed to the Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship, a nonprofit group charged with distributing the funds to the state’s Pregnancy Resource Centers.
In the Finance Committee, after primary bill sponsor Rep. Mitch Gillespie (R-McDowell) offered a brief explanation of the measure, the debate quickly focused on the inclusion of the “Choose Life” plate, which has been proposed for authorization for nearly a decade. Rep. Paul Luebke (D-Orange) offered an amendment, which sought to place restrictions on use of funds gained by the “Choose Life” plate, proposing that they only be directed to organizations that provide counseling for “all legal options,” including abortion. Rep. Gillespie urged committee members to vote down the amendment, adding that, as the bill’s sponsor, he would not allow the bill to proceed if such an amendment were adopted. After lengthy debate, Rep. Luebke’s amendment failed by a vote of 12-16.
Rep. Kelly Alexander (D-Mecklenburg) then proposed an amendment, which would have added another specialty plate to the bill, with part of the proceeds from the sale of the plate to be directed to Planned Parenthood. Some committee members voiced support for the change, arguing that it was only fair that both sides of the abortion debate be represented. As we previously reported, this amendment, which was also proposed during consideration in the House Transportation Committee in May, was rejected by a vote of 14-15.
An additional amendment, proposed by Rep. Deborah Ross (D-Wake) sought to increase state regulation of the PRCs, which typically operate on a small budget, relying heavily on volunteers. That amendment also failed. The vote was 11-16. Ultimately, the House Finance committee passed the un-amended version of HB 289 by a vote of 17-13. It will now go to the House floor for consideration there.
"Choose Life" Plate Passes Committee - May 18, 2011
Choose Life Plate Considered - May 12, 2011
"Choose Life" Bill Introduced- February 17, 2011
Choose Life Month - January 10, 2011
2011 Radio Show with Eva Ritchey - 2011
Choose Life Not Chosen Again - June 18, 2010
Choose Life Lawsuit Possible - May 27, 2010
Choose Life Plate Gets Billboard Boost - October 20, 2009
Unequal Treatment - FNC - July/August 2009
"Choose Life" Advocates Move Forward - June 1, 2009
"Choose Life" Plate Redesigned- April 17, 2009
In Some States Motorists Can "Choose Life"- January 31, 2008
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