Governor McCrory proposed a fiscally responsible budget that keeps spending in line with the growth of population and inflation. While the House blew past the spending limit -hiking spending 21/2 times faster than the Taxpayer Protection Act -the Senate has kept spending under control, matching Governor McCrory’s $21.5 billion request.
While the Governor wants to modernize state compensation to meet competition from the market, the House chose to keep granting across the board raises instead of raising pay in hard to fill jobs. The Senate has now rejected the more political approach in the House and sided with the Governor’s plan.
The Governor wanted more job grant funds for incentives and that priority is reflected in the Senate budget. The Governor wants a corporate tax change to help companies creating jobs with big ticket investment plans. The Senate agrees.
The Governor wanted more for transportation through increased debt. The Senate decided to move faster, skipping the time a bond issue would take by adding over $300 million to the highway fund, mostly by ending the practice of raiding the highway fund to pay for other spending. Unfortunately, the House keeps the raid.
The Senate also gave the Governor more money for infrastructure repairs than the House.
The Governor helped design a plan to get politics out of the road funding formula. The Senate backed him with 70 new projects.
The Senate does differ with the Governor in one area. They oppose special tax breaks for favored groups like wind farms and instead support a 25% increase in the standard deduction for every income tax payer.
Working together, the Governor, the Senate and the House helped put North Carolina in the right direction by boosting education and cutting taxes across the board for families and businesses. Our state is creating jobs 20% faster than the national average.
In 2016, the Democrats will always be able to outbid Republicans when it comes to special interest promises. Republicans should keep their focus on economic growth, investment in schools and transportation. In the words of Benjamin Franklin, Republicans better hang together or they will hang separately.