General Assembly passes state budget
The House and Senate passed adjustments to the state’s biennial budget this week.
Ninety percent of the bill passed this week was included in the budget passed last year during the legislative long session. The purpose of this week’s budget bill was to make adjustments to that biennial budget.
Adjustments were made in the following areas, all while rejecting calls from Democrats to reverse additional tax cuts scheduled to occur on Jan. 1, 2019. As reported by the House Speaker’s Office:
- Investments in Teachers and Schools
- A fifth-consecutive teacher pay raise averaging 6.5%
- A $700 million increase in public education funding
- $3,150 average principal pay raise
- Making Schools Safer
- $35 million for school safety initiatives
- $241 million lottery funds to build or upgrade school facilities
- Better Compensation for State Employees
- A new baseline salary of $31,200 for all state employees
- A 2% raise for most state employees and a cost-of-living supplement for retirees
- Taxpayers Keep More Hard-Earned Money
- 99% of North Carolina families will pay lower state income taxes, or no taxes, in 2019
- The zero-tax bracket for working families increases to $20,000, tripling since 2011.
- 5.25% new state income tax rate, down from a top rate of 7.75% since 2011.
- Rewarding Law Enforcement and Corrections Officers
- A 4% pay raise for all corrections officers
- $44,000 starting pay for State Troopers
- In 6 years a State Trooper will reach top of pay scale: $64,202
- $15 million for security and safety improvements in state prisons
- Protecting Drinking Water
- Over $10 million to address GenX and provide access to clean drinking water.
- Helping Disaster Victims Recover
- $60 million new funds for disaster relief
- State disaster relief funds total over $360 million since Hurricane Matthew
- Saving for the Future
- $2 billion savings reserve fund for emergencies is a state record
- Connecting Rural North Carolina
- $10 million investment in broadband access to nonurban communities
We’re doing more while cutting taxes. We’re implementing basic economic principles, and it’s working. Imagine that.
Local government representatives visit Raleigh
I got the opportunity to hear from a number of local representatives this week when they visited Raleigh:
- Yancey County
- County Manager Nathan Bennett
- County Commission Clerk to the Board Jason Robinson
- Yancey Co. Economic Development Commission Executive Director Jamie McMahan
- Madison County
- Sheriff Buddy Harwood
- Chief Deputy Coy Phillips
- County Commissioner Matt Wechtel
- County Commissioner Norris Gentry
- County Planner Sara Nichols
- Haywood County
- Sheriff Greg Christopher
- Town of Burnsville
- Mayor Theresa Coletta
- Town Councilor Russell Fox
- Town Councilor Judy Buchanan
- Town Councilor Bunnie McIntosh
We discussed a wide range of local issues. Local officials are welcome in my office anytime, along with any constituents who would like to visit.
You may contact me or my office in a number of ways to set up a meeting in Raleigh:
- Call the office at (919)733-5732
- Call my cell phone at (828)208-3874
- Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Just drop in at 300 N. Salisbury St., Room 306B2, Raleigh
If you would like to meet in the district, you may call my cell phone anytime at (828)208-3874.