Governor’s budget reverses backwards retreat
Together NC applauds Perdue for restoring today and building for tomorrow
RALEIGH (May 10) — Together NC, a coalition of more than 120 partner organizations, applauded Governor Perdue this morning for recognizing that what North Carolina needs now is to reinvest in its people and places, not continue to retreat from them.
The Governor unveiled her proposed adjustments to the FY 2012-2013 state budget in a press conference today and outlined her plan for restoring deep cuts to public schools, prekindergarten, and universities and community colleges.
"We have said over and over again that the path to full economic recovery is to restore and build upon our public investments in education, healthcare and infrastructure, not slash and burn them,” said Louisa Warren, co-coordinator of Together NC. “The Governor stood strong today and showed us what it looks like to stand up for education and our state’s future."
She paid for the expansion items by partially reinstating a sales tax increase by three-quarter cents that expired last year.
"Policymakers have choices and the legislature chose last year to take a cuts-only approach to the state budget while the Governor has taken a balanced one. We hope the legislature will heed her leadership," Warren said. "The cuts-only approach has led to the loss of thousands of jobs, higher tuition, limited early education opportunities, and reduced health care services. That’s not a path we have to continue on and the Governor showed us that this morning."
However, Warren noted there are still areas of the state budget that have experienced deep budget cuts that aren’t fully addressed in the Governor’s proposal and that the sales tax alone is a regressive approach to raising adequate revenue.
"The sales tax is an effective tool at raising adequate revenue quickly but it also hits vulnerable families the hardest. That’s why Together NC supports expanding the state’s Earned Income Tax Credit to offset the regressive nature of the sales tax," Warren said.
Together NC members will be unveiling their own plan for dealing with the state’s fiscal challenges in a press conference on May 14 at 11am in front of the legislature.
Together NC is a collection of more than 120 non-profit organizations, service providers, and professional associations who have come together to promote wise choices for shared prosperity for all North Carolinians. For more information, visit www.togethernc.org.