I would like the NC General Assembly to reconsider the proposed elimination of the NC Child Fatality Task Force. I was privileged to be the Executive Director of the Task Force in 1996. There is no question that the work of the Task Force over the years has saved children's lives. So many of these child deaths are preventable--and preventing them is the legacy of the Task Force.
Gov. Jim Martin established the statewide Task Force as well as a local committee in all 100 counties. This was the Governor's response to NC holding the embarrassing place of #48 out of 50 in infant mortality.
Some issues are county-specific and can be handled best at the local level; often without legislation. But others have an impact on our children throughout NC. It is efficient and cost-effective to pursue a statewide fix to persistent problems.
I am particularly proud of the Graduated Driver License law that we passed. Like most of our bills, this was a bi-partisan effort. The law has been improved upon over the years, but NC was among the first states to pass it and other states soon replicated our efforts.
This is a small expenditure of money for a positive result.