Alcohol formula

NC Gov. Cooper signs bills dealing with sexual assault and alcohol – WSOC TV

RALEIGH, North Carolina — North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper signed 11 bills to his desk on Thursday, including legislation that addresses sexual assault, domestic violence and liquor sales.

The signed bills were among more than three dozen the General Assembly sent to Cooper during the last two days of its business session, which ended Friday.

A signed measure makes it clear that hospitals or medical practices cannot attempt to bill victims of sexual assault or their insurance companies for forensic examinations, leaving it to a special public fund already in place to cover the payment.

The bill, which also increases the number of criminal offenses for which a conviction requires a defendant to provide a DNA sample, came amid reports that dozens of medical establishments sent such invoices to insurance companies. The bill also increases the maximum amounts the fund will pay to hospitals and doctors’ offices to perform the exams.

“Victims of sexual assault deserve access to a rape kit without being further victimized by being charged,” Cooper said in a press release. “This new law will also strengthen the state’s DNA database used to catch criminals by including domestic violence and crimes of assault.”

With another bill signed, patrons of standalone bars in North Carolina no longer need to first become paying members of the establishments to get a drink.

State liquor control laws have regulated what are commonly referred to as “private bars” for decades.

But the designation meant that establishment owners had to charge a usually small fee for a potential customer to become a member and get beer, wine or a mixed drink. Operators have complained that this requires them to check everyone who walks through the door and keep lists of members.

Under the new rules, contained in a broader liquor law approved by wide margins in the House and Senate, private bars will now be known in state law as bars that primarily sell liquor. and do not serve prepared meals.

Other measures signed on Thursday would also:

  • Clarifying the rules of the recently created “social quarters” and “common area entertainment permits”, in which customers of establishments that sell alcoholic beverages can take their drinks to the street or in shared seating areas and consume them .
  • Allow judges to temporarily extend domestic violence protection orders if a hearing to renew the order is scheduled after the current order expires.

Cooper has until Sunday night or Monday night — depending on the bill — to act on the remaining measures on his desk, which include the lawmaker’s proposed adjustments to the state budget. A bill becomes law without his signature if he does not sign or veto it before the deadline.

(WATCH BELOW: City memo: Social districts may take Charlotte 3-5 months to implement)