McCrory: 'I don't see a need' to oversee SBI - WSPA.com

McCrory: 'I don't see a need' to oversee SBI

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A provision in the state Senate's budget calls for operations of the State Bureau of Investigation to be transferred to the executive branch, but Gov. Pat McCrory says he's "got enough on my plate." A provision in the state Senate's budget calls for operations of the State Bureau of Investigation to be transferred to the executive branch, but Gov. Pat McCrory says he's "got enough on my plate."
RALEIGH, N.C. -

A provision in the state Senate's budget calls for operations of the State Bureau of Investigation to be transferred to the executive branch, but Gov. Pat McCrory says he's "got enough on my plate."

The Senate's budget for the next two-year cycle starting July 1 transfers about half of the SBI's 423 positions to the Department of Public Safety under Secretary Kieran Shanahan, a McCrory appointee.

It leaves the state crime lab, a five-person public corruption unit and a number of information technology jobs under the direct control of the attorney general.

State sheriff and police chief associations oppose the change, fearing the new system will invite greater bureaucracy and hurt responsiveness. The Republican governor also opposes the move, questioning the necessity.

"I personally am not asking that the SBI be transferred to my authority," McCrory said Tuesday. "I don't see a need to do it and I've got enough on my plate."

Roy Cooper spoke against the idea Monday, alongside police chiefs and prosecutors who also oppose moving the State Bureau of Investigation to the Department of Public Safety, which includes all other law enforcement agencies.

Republican senators argued the unit is better grouped with the rest of the state's law enforcement divisions to enhance coordination among the agencies. The Republican budget estimates $2 million in savings from the consolidation in its second year.

"I think they see some potential cost savings, and there may be but I haven't been presented the argument to transfer the SBI at this point in time," McCrory said of the proposal.

The SBI assists local law enforcement on specialized crime and pursues public corruption investigations. It is currently under the Attorney General's Department of Justice.

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