S912: Greensboro Civilian Traffic Investigators/SBE. Latest Version


Senate
Passed 1st Reading
Rules



AN ACT To ALLOW THE CITY OF Greensboro TO USE CIVILIAN TRAFFIC INVESTIGATORS TO INVESTIGATE PROPERTY DAMAGE CRASHES and to establish a small business enterprise program to promote the development of small businesses in the city.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1.(a)  Subchapter F of Chapter V of the Charter of the City of Greensboro, being Chapter 1137 of the Session Laws of 1959, as amended, is amended by adding a new Article to read as follows:

ARTICLE 3. CIVILIAN TRAFFIC INVESTIGATORS.

Sec. 580. Civilian Traffic Investigators.

(a)        Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the City may employ and allow civilian personnel to investigate traffic crashes and issue citations for infractions under Chapter 20 of the General Statutes related to the traffic crashes investigated. The civilian personnel shall be known as Civilian Traffic Investigators.

(b)        All of the following shall apply to Civilian Traffic Investigators (hereinafter Investigator or Investigators) employed by the City:

(1)        The City shall establish the minimum standards for employment as an Investigator.

(2)        Each Investigator shall attend a training program designed by the City of Greensboro Police Department in consultation with the North Carolina Justice Academy. Upon completion of the training program, each Investigator shall spend not less than four weeks of field training with a law enforcement officer who has experience conducting traffic crash investigations.

(3)        Each Investigator shall be issued credentials by the City identifying the individual as a Civilian Traffic Investigator. The Investigator shall produce official credentials at any time when requested by a member of the public involved in or a witness to a crash.

(4)        Investigators shall be issued a uniform that is substantially different in color and style from that of a law enforcement officer for the City. The uniform shall have patches that clearly identify the individual as an Investigator, and the individual's name shall be clearly displayed on the uniform. Investigators shall not be issued badges.

(5)        Any vehicles issued to, or used by, an Investigator shall not bear markings or symbols that identify the vehicle as a police vehicle. The vehicle may have emergency equipment and lights installed but shall not use blue lights in any manner or form. Red and amber lights are permissible.

(6)        Investigators shall not be issued a weapon of any type.

(7)        Investigators shall have no authority to arrest or issue criminal process.

(8)        Investigators shall investigate crashes involving only property damage. Investigators shall comply with all provisions of G.S. 20‑166.1. A report completed by an Investigator shall be treated the same as if it were completed by a law enforcement officer for purposes of G.S. 20‑166.1(i). A law enforcement officer shall investigate any crash involving personal injury or a fatality.

(9)        Investigators shall have the same authority as a law enforcement officer to tow or remove a vehicle that is obstructing a public street or highway.

SECTION 1.(b)  Not later than December 31, 2023, the City of Greensboro shall submit to the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee on Justice and Public Safety and the Senate Committee on Appropriations on Justice and Public Safety a written report on the training and use of Civilian Traffic Investigators, as authorized in this section, for the period commencing on the effective date of this act and concluding November 1, 2023.

SECTION 2.  Chapter VII of the Charter of the City of Greensboro, being Chapter 1137 of the Session Laws of 1959, as amended, is amended by adding a new Subchapter to read as follows:

SUBCHAPTER D. SMALL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE PROGRAM.

Sec. 7.45. Small Business Enterprise Program.

(a)        The City may establish a race‑ and gender‑neutral small business enterprise program to promote the development of small businesses in the Greensboro Metropolitan Statistical Area and to enhance opportunities for small businesses to participate in City contracts. The City may define the term small business enterprise as appropriate and consistent with the City's contracting practices. The City may establish bid and proposal specifications that include subcontracting goals and good‑faith effort requirements to enhance participation by small business enterprises in City contracts. Notwithstanding the provisions of G.S. 143‑129 and G.S. 143‑131(b), the City may consider a bidder's efforts to comply with small business enterprise program requirements in its award of City contracts and, if a bidder is determined to have failed to comply with the requirements, the City may, within its discretion, refuse to award a contract to the bidder.

(b)        The small business enterprise program authorized by this section is intended to supplement and not replace the requirements of G.S. 143‑128.2, 143‑131(b), or 143‑135.5. Any goals or efforts established to achieve veteran, minority, and women's business participation consistent with the requirements of G.S. 143‑128.2, 143‑131(b), or 143‑135.5 shall take precedence over goals for small business enterprise participation established under the program authorized by this section. A small business enterprise program established pursuant to this section shall be deemed consistent with the public policy of the State of North Carolina to promote and utilize small and underutilized business enterprises as set forth in G.S. 143‑128.2, 143‑128.3, and 143‑135.5.

SECTION 3.  This act is effective when it becomes law.