Another week, another week of frustration for North Carolina’s entrepreneurial community. No crowdfunding. No new venture capital fund.

The state’s General Assembly continues to drag its collective feet on crowdfunding legislation even as other states such as Texas continue to embrace the means of providing more people access to investment in startups. And frustration in the entrepreneurial community is growing. What in blazes is the holdup?

As WTW reported last week, crowdfunding-focused Malartu Funds is launching, tired of waiting. On May 22, the House approved the new venture fund. Now it’s up to the Senate.

Not even WRAL’s ace political reporting team can figure out what the delays are all about.

“It has been a week where the focus hasn’t exactly been on economic issues, something Gov. Pat McCrory noted when he spoke to reporters Thursday,” says WRAL’s Mark Binker in response to an inquiry from WTW.

That means no progress to report either on a proposed venture capital fund that could create up to $120 million in a mix of state and private sector cash.

Maybe progress will come this week.

“What I can tell you is that Senate leaders have said they expect to roll out a bill that will be part tax package (read some sort of tax cut) and part economic development package soon, possibly early [this] week,” Binker adds after gazing into his political crystal ball.

But who knows? That ball is filled with fog.

“We don’t know exactly what will be on board in that bill, but that’s the best chance for news on either of those items that I know about right now,” Binker says.

Crowdfunding frustration

The ongoing delay in passage of a crowdfunding bill – which has huge bipartisan support – is frustrating backers of the so-called NC PACES Act.

“I have not heard anything new about when S481 will move,” investor Mark Easley, a big proponent of the bill, tells WTW.

“It is still pending before the Senate Finance Committee. If the Senate leadership chooses to act on it, there is broad bi-partisan support for the bill, and the Governor has repeatedly called for its passage.

“It is time for the General Assembly to get this done,” he declares.

“Both Illinois and Montana have just passed their intrastate crowdfunding exemptions, so there are now 21 states with an exemption, and 18 more working on it.”

Should North Carolina finally positively and pass a bill, Easley says the state would gain an advantage in luring entrepreneurs and startups away from Silicon Valley. (Easley, by the way, is a former Silicon Valley-based executive.)

“California just let their version die in committee, so that is another reason for our startups to stay right here if we get it implemented,” Easley says.

“So at this point the question is pretty simple. Do we want to be a leader in this new financing model for our startups and small businesses like Texas, or be left behind in the dust like California?”

What say you, N.C. politicos?