No web surfing for lawmakers

December 2, 2008 9:00:00 PM PST
North Carolina state senators apparently can't be trusted not to surf the web. Senators will finally get laptop computers at their desks in the chamber when the Legislature reconvenes next month, but won't be able to surf the web or check email from the Senate floor.Senate leaders are allowing the new laptops, but they've had them modified so Senators can only look at proposed bills, state laws, and Senate rules. Leaders say allowing wider internet access would be a "distraction."

By comparison, the State House has allowed members to use laptops in its chamber for years without any restrictions.

The Legislature's laptops are refurbished computers already owned by North Carolina. That saved the $40,000 it would have cost to buy new ones.