North Carolina Child Support Family Law Legal Minute

NC Democrat proposes red flag law in wake of school shootings in Parkland, Santa Fe, Bowie High School in Maryland

Two more high-profile shootings at high schools have occurred – at Great Mills High School in southern Maryland, where the school resource officer shot at the gunman after two students were injured; and just last week at Santa Fe High School in Texas, where 10 people were killed. On Monday, days after the Texas shooting raised new questions about how to make schools safe for the children who attend them, Morey filed a bill calling for a red flag law in North Carolina. Under her proposal, family members or law enforcement officers who have first-hand knowledge of someone. If granted, the judge would order law enforcement to temporarily remove any weapons, then schedule a hearing within 10 business days to give the person and others an opportunity to discuss whether to bar the person from having firearms for a full year. The proposal is similar to laws that have been passed in other states such as Florida, Maryland, Vermont and Delaware since Feb. 14, when 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., and opened fire with an AR-15 rifle. 

Cruz had been expelled from the school for disciplinary reasons. The shooting left 17 dead and added a new voice to calls for reform of gun laws – the Parkland students who were inside the school as the shooter fired shot after shot. Rep. Grier Martin, a Wake County Democrat and member of the Army Reserves, spoke briefly in support of the proposal as a way to get weapons temporarily out of the hands of suicidal military veterans. Moore appointed a committee to study school safety after the Parkland shootings and last week the lawmakers released a series of recommendations that called for better mental health strategies and for funding to set up a statewide anonymous tip line for reporting of potential threats, but did not include a red flag law. 

Connecticut led the way with adoption of a red flag law in 1999. Many of the Democrats pushing the proposals said they thought lawmakers should go even further to limit access to some firearms, but described the red flag law as one that they hoped could draw bipartisan support. One of the speakers who came out to support such a law was Aaron Wolff, a veterinarian in Wake County who was a student at Virginia Tech in 2007 when a gunman killed 32 people on the Blacksburg, Va., campus. 

Keywords: [“law”,”school”,”Morey”]

Legislators Move to Protect Hog Farms, Again

Most farms using open lagoons and sprayers to manage manure and urine could be shielded from nuisance lawsuits. Now that neighbors to one hog farm have one court victory against the world’s largest pork producer, state legislators are moving to shield hog farms from nuisance lawsuits. One of a team of in-state and out-of-state lawyers representing 500 citizens who are suing Smithfield Foods and alleging nuisances at 26 farms sees it differently. They live in neighborhoods established before intensive livestock farming expanded nearby and now live, on average, within half a mile of a hog farm. Without explicitly saying so, Senate Bill 771 would exempt lagoon and spray systems, which are commonly used in Eastern North Carolina hog farms. 

In the active lawsuits, neighbors say Smithfield should take steps to require farmers to install more expensive waste management technology that reduces the airborne release of manure and urine components from the farms. That protective measure followed several significant changes legislators made to the state’s Right to Farm law in 2013. That action expanded which farms are immune from nuisance lawsuits to include farms that changed ownership or size, were not farmed as long as three years, or changed the type of agriculture they produce. Changes in the legislation occurred weeks after the initial filings of nuisance suits against Murphy-Brown, which is owned by Smithfield Foods, now part of giant Chinese pork producer WH Group Ltd. In April, a jury awarded $50 million to neighbors of a Bladen County hog farm raising Smithfield hogs in a strong case plaintiff attorneys handpicked to begin the trials. 

He said that doesn’t acknowledge the bill would only protect farms following applicable laws and regulations as well as widely used farming methods. The previous bill limited damages in future nuisance lawsuits to lost value in a home; the current bill would exempt most hog farms from any nuisance lawsuits at all. For one, Dixon said, the judge rejected a Smithfield request that jurors visit the Bladen County farm that was the focus of the first, successful lawsuit. 

Keywords: [“farm”,”bill”,”lawsuit”]

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Keywords: [“real”,”estate”,”contain”]