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States the purpose of the Constitution

Declaration of Rights

Similar to the Bill of Rights; lists the rights of citizens of North Carolina including the right to a free, basic education

General Assembly

Legislative branch of the state; similar to the US Congress; bicameral - House and Senate; approves the state budget


State laws

Length of term for members of the General Assembly

2 years


Head of the executive branch in the state of North Carolina

Lieutenant Governor

2nd highest official in the executive branch in the state of North Carolina

Legislative Leader

Can veto laws passed by the General Assembly

Commander in Chief

Leader of the state militia (the national guard)

Economic Leader

Prepares the state's budget

Chief Executive

Carries out the laws


As judicial leader the governor can reduce a criminal's sentence

Term length for the governor

4 years (limited to two consecutive (back to back) terms just like the president)

Powers of the Lieutenant Governor

Presides over the state senate and votes in case of a tie; takes over for the governor if necessary (succession)

Council of State

Elected; help the governor decide how to spend tax money on various programs


Appointed advisors of the governor who help her carry out policy

Department of Health and Human Services

Oversees public expenditures; the largest expenditure of the state

Department of Corrections

Runs the prison and parole system - or the release of prisoners

Department of Transportation

Plans, builds, and maintains NC's roads, bridges, ferries, buses, etc.

NC District Court

NC trial court that handles misdemeanors, juvenile law, divorce and other family law, and civil cases less than $10,000

NC Superior Court

NC trial court that handles more serious cases such as felonies and civil cases involving more than $10,000

NC Court of Appeals

Hears most of the appeals from the state's trial courts; made up of three judges called panels

NC Supreme Court

The highest court in the state; hears appeals of all death penalty sentences

State Judges

Elected in non-partisan elections

Board of County Commissioners

The major governing body of counties; members are elected; make county laws, approve county budgets, and set county tax rates

County Manager

Recommends a budget for the County Commissioners and helps with day to day operations

Register of Deeds

Keeps records of land ownership, marriages, births and deaths


Examine suspicious causes of death


Elected; highest law enforcement officer in the county; oversee the jail, provides courthouse security, transports prisoners

School Board

Elected officials who determine educational policy in a county

Services provided by counties

Community colleges, elections, jails, mental health services, public health services, public schools, court facilities


Cities, towns, villages


Means that the state has declared that a specific area is a municipality and has given it a charter.


Outlines the basic rules for that municipal government


Process of bringing unincorporated land and its residents into an existing municipality; how a city expands its borders; municipal governments in NC can annex adjacent areas even if the people living in those areas don't want to be annexed

City Council

Makes city policy, approves a city budget, makes city ordinances


Local laws


Determines appropriate land use


Presides over the city council; usually elected

City Manager

Proposes the budget for the city; advises city council on policy

Chief of Police

Top law enforcement official in a municipality; appointed by the city manager

Services provided by municipalities

Cemeteries, electric and gas systems, sidewalks, street lighting, streets, traffic control, urban development


The NC budget must be this; required by NC state law

Sales Tax

Paid when people purchase goods and services in NC

Non-tax Revenue

Revenue generated by fines, license fees and permit fees

Corporate Income tax

Tax on the profits of businesses


The number one state expenditure; public schools, community colleges and universities

Property Taxes

Local government tax on the value of property - vehicles, real estate, etc.; number one source of revenue for a county


Determines the value of property of tax purposes

Intergovernmental Revenue

Money that local governments receive from the federal government and the state; most of it goes to pay for healthcare, housing and education


Money paid to state or local governments as punishment for violations


Grant permission for a fee to engage in certain acts - hunting, marriage, etc

User Utility Fee

Payment for the use of a public service, such as water or trash collection


Grants permission for someone to permit a certain action, such as construction

Public Schools

Number on expenditure for counties


Such as water and sewage systems are the number one expenditure for municipalities

Public Safety

Includes fire and police protection

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