Medical Expense Deduction AARP continues our big push on the medical expense deduction and the need to extend the 7.5% threshold before the end of the year.  Failure to do so will result in a tax increase for 4.4 million individuals and families across the country with high health care costs.  Today, AARP released a statement urging congressional action. https://press.aarp.org/2019-12-5-Statement-Medical-Expense-Deduction 

RoboCall Bill  The House and Senate have reached an agreement on the ‘robocall bill’ (now titled Pallone-Thune TRACED Act) which AARP supports.  The bill in its final form represents a compromise between the House and Senate versions.  The Senate may vote on the final bill Thursday of this week. Stay tuned!

Stop Rx Greed The House of Representatives has not scheduled a vote on Rx CampaignHR3 and it is unclear when the vote will be scheduled.  HR3 was passed by the Senate in November and AARP is hopeful that bill will be scheduled by the middle of the December.  Link: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/3

Older Americans Act (OAA) (HR 4334) The House passed their version of the OAA (titled The Dignity in Aging Act of 2019) in October and the Senate is still working on their version.  The Senate is not expected to take up the House version of the OAA, however, there will likely be a compromise bill negotiated between the two chambers.  At this time the path forward remain unclear.

State of NC 

A three-judge panel unanimously decided that there was not enough time to scrutinize the new congressional district map for extreme partisan bias thereby allowing the new North Carolina congressional maps to be used for the 2020 elections.   Congressional primaries are in March and candidate filings began December 2.  The court acknowledged that there is not enough time to decide on the constitutional challenges to the maps without delaying primary elections significantly.

US Senate candidate Garland Tucker drops primary challenge to Senator Thom Tillis. In a letter to his donors “Tucker said that the campaign had become more challenging as of September and he did not have the funds to run a competitive race.

NC House District 6:  Kathy Manning of Greensboro, unsuccessful ran for NC Congressional District 13 held by incumbent Representative Ted Budd (R), has announced that she will run for NC House District 6 currently represented by Congressman Mark Walker (R).  Walker is reportedly considering running again incumbent Republican Senator Thom Tillis following congressional map redistricting.

NC General Assembly: As the 2019 holiday season approaches, the NC General Assembly has yet to pass a budget for 2019-2021.  Proposed budgets have been vetoed by Governor Roy Cooper (D) and multiple critical programs, including Medicaid Transformation, face an uncertain future. Managed Medicaid or Medicaid Transformation has been officially “suspended,” since the budget hasn’t passed.  Other items like, teacher raises, are the source of discord between the legislature and governor’s office.  The longest session of the NC General Assembly is costing tax payers $42,000 per day to operate. For more visit: https://www.ncpolicywatch.com/2019/11/12/the-general-assembly-has-still-not-finished-its-work/