August 20, 2021
In this issue...
Join a free webinar to learn about local government ARP funding for nonprofits
State budget negotiations will include decisions on many nonprofit appropriations and provisions 
Reminder: Share the impact of the pandemic on your nonprofit
House committee approves bill to allow employers to offer exclusive provider benefit plans
NC House approves donor privacy legislation in party-line vote
Join a Free Webinar to Learn about Local Government ARP Funding for Nonprofits
Earlier this year, Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARP) to assist communities in their continued recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The ARP provided billions of dollars to the State of North Carolina and to local governments throughout the state. Local governments can use some of this funding to partner with nonprofits on programs and services to help communities and to provide relief to nonprofits that have suffered economic harm due to the pandemic.

To help nonprofits learn more about local ARP funding , the Center is offering a free webinar on Friday, September 3 at 10 a.m. about how nonprofits can partner with state and local governments to make the best use of ARP funds. The NC Pandemic Recovery Office will provide an overview of ARP funding in North Carolina, including the amount of funding available, permissible uses of funds, the process for distribution of funds, and the timing for allocation of funds by local governments. The Center will provide an update on the NC General Assembly’s allocation of state ARP funds and offer insights into trends in nonprofits’ needs and ways that nonprofits can engage with their local governments to advocate for meaningful and equitable allocation of local ARP funds. Register today.
State Budget Negotiations Will Include Decisions on Many Nonprofit Appropriations and Provisions
This week, the NC Senate and NC House of Representatives established a conference committee that will negotiate a final version of the state budget for FY2021-23 (S.105). Legislators hope to come to agreement on appropriations and provisions by the end of August and then work with Governor Roy Cooper on details so that each chamber can pass the final budget the second week of September.

The House and Senate each passed their own versions of the state budget earlier this summer. Both versions included significant new funding for nonprofits (about $701 million in the House budget, and about $360 million in the Senate budget), and a variety of other provisions that would affect the work of some or all charitable nonprofits in North Carolina. To help your nonprofit understand the differences between the two versions of the budget, the Center has prepared a chart comparing various appropriations and provisions affecting nonprofits in the House-approved budget and the Senate-approved version. The Center continues to advocate with legislators and the Governor’s Office to include favorable nonprofit provisions in the final version of the budget.
Reminder: Share the Impact of the Pandemic on Your Nonprofit
The National Council of Nonprofits and the Federal Reserve are partnering on a survey to create a comprehensive picture of the effects of the pandemic on nonprofits and the communities we serve, both nationwide and here in North Carolina. The results will help the Center and our national partners inform policymakers at every level of government about the challenges nonprofits have faced during the pandemic and can help nonprofit organizations advocate for further relief.

Please take 15 minutes to complete the survey. The survey is open through next Tuesday, August 24. Thank you if you or someone else from your organization has already completed the survey.
House Committee Approves Bill to Allow Employers to Offer Exclusive Provider Benefit Plans
On Wednesday, the NC House Insurance Committee approved a bill (S.228) that would allow North Carolina nonprofits and small businesses to offer exclusive provider benefit (EPO benefit) plans for their employees. EPO benefit plans are typically 15%-20% less expensive than other health insurance plans and allow participants to use a limited network of local health care providers while paying the full cost for any out-of-network health services other than emergency care. Potentially, this legislation could provide a meaningful and affordable health coverage option for some nonprofits. During the committee meeting, some health advocates recommended changes to the bill to provide assurances that EPO plans will offer an adequate range of health providers, particularly in rural areas, and to require notice to participants about the limits of EPO plans.

The Senate unanimously approved the bill in May and also included similar language as a provision in its version of the state budget. It still needs approval of two more House committees before going before the full House. If the House Health Committee takes up the bill, it is possible that it could revise it to address concerns about adequacy of coverage and notice to plan participants.
NC House Approves Donor Privacy Legislation in Party-Line Vote
Yesterday, the NC House of Representatives approved a bill (S.636) designed to create limits on the disclosure of donors to nonprofits. The bill essentially does two things:
  1. Prohibit nonprofits from disclosing “the identity of any person donating monies or other tangible goods to the nonprofit corporation” if a donor notifies the nonprofit that they would like their identity kept confidential. There is an exception for disclosures required by law, court order, or criminal investigations. Representative Pricey Harrison (D-Guilford) offered an amendment that would have limited this provision to 501(c)(3) nonprofits, but the House rejected it along party lines.
  2. Prohibit state officials from providing Schedule B of nonprofits’ Forms 990 or 990-EZ (that is the attachment that includes donor information) in public records requests. This is consistent with federal tax law, which makes Schedule B donor information confidential.

The bill passed the House along partisan lines. It moved quickly through the House, passing through a committee about an hour before being added to yesterday’s House calendar. Because the House made a technical change to the bill, it goes back to the Senate for final approval before it is sent to Governor Cooper for his consideration.
The Center provides Nonprofit Policy Update each week as a benefit to its nonprofit members. However, to help all North Carolina nonprofits respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, we're temporarily providing this newsletter to non-member nonprofits. Don’t miss out – become a member to ensure you continue receiving these updates along with many other valuable benefits.
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Nonprofit Policy Update is a weekly newsletter for current members of the North Carolina Center for Nonprofits. We track state and federal policy issues that affect all 501(c)(3) nonprofits. Learn about the Center's public policy priorities. For more information, contact David Heinen, Vice President for Public Policy and Advocacy.