"Republican legislators’ plan to take over key state commissions would remake the Coastal Resources Commission in a way that could strain a decades-long partnership with federal regulators.
At stake is $2.5 million in federal funds the state receives each year to help protect the environment in a federal-state partnership that has afforded North Carolina local control of coastal development permits.
A bill working through the General Assembly would change the balance of interests on the commission by reducing the number of members required to have expertise in the scientific areas that the commission deals with. It would increase the number of at-large and, potentially, the number of business appointments.
Senate Bill 10 also lifts the current prohibition on commissioners’ making a significant amount of their income from development, real estate or lobbying."