A bill requiring local governments and state agencies to roll back environmental regulations has passed its first full vote in the North Carolina Senate.
The Senate approved a bill Wednesday that requires cities, counties and numerous state agencies to repeal or rewrite rules that go beyond federal law.
The Republican bill also allows businesses or utilities to dispose of waste on site rather than transporting it to a landfill and potentially weakens standards to mitigate damage to wetlands. Buffers intended to protect water quality in two major river basins are safe.
Democrats focused their criticism on rollbacks at the local level, citing examples of local ordinances that could be lost. Republicans argued their reforms will help ease the burden on businesses.
The bill will return for a final vote.
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