House moves NC bond referendum date against McCrory’s wishes

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Gov. Pat McCrory attends the NC Sheriff's Association Annual Training Conference in Sunset Beach July 27, 2015.

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The North Carolina House has decided it wants to hold a referendum for a nearly $3 billion proposed bond package early next year – not this November like Gov. Pat McCrory wants.

The House supported by a wide margin Thursday an amendment moving the statewide vote to the same date as the North Carolina presidential primary, expected March 15. The chamber then voted 76-29 for the package, the second approval in as many days. The proposal now goes to the Senate.

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The last-minute referendum delay was surprising since a key lawmaker defended this week holding the vote Nov. 3.

McCrory backs a November vote although only municipal elections are currently scheduled this fall. But House Speaker Tim Moore previously said he preferred an early 2016 referendum.

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