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State House passes local bills

A bill that would make it easier for the Hendersonville City Council to raise its pay passed the state House and went to the way to the Senate on Monday.

State Rep. Chuck McGrady filed the local bill based on a request from the City Council. It passed in the state House on Monday and is expected to win quick approval in the Senate under the guidance of Sen. Tom Apodaca, the senior chamber's Rules Committee chair.

Current law bars a City Council pay increase from taking effect during the term of the council that enacts it. That set up an inequity, City Manager John Connet said, that would allow half the council to receive a raise after the next election while the others would have to wait two more years. The council has no current plans to raise its salary, Connet said.

The House also passed a bill that would transfer ownership of 3.3 acres on the Blue Ridge Community College campus to Henderson County for the new Career Academy, a new school combining Henderson County Early College and Balfour Education Center programs.