RALEIGH (July 9, 2019) – The Governor has released an outline of budget priorities that represents a reasonable and principled effort to work with legislative leaders in building a budget that addresses the state’s most pressing issues, including the lack of health care coverage for half a million North Carolinians and the underinvestment in educational, environmental, and capital priorities for communities across the state.
While not all of our concerns with the conference report are addressed in the Governor’s proposal, it represents an important step in building a budget that reflects the will of the many rather than the few. By stopping tax cuts for big business, the Governor is able to make greater progress on key priorities in early education, K-12 classrooms, and pay for teachers and state employees.
By including Medicaid expansion, the Governor not only quickly and fully closes the coverage gap without additional costs or barriers but also gives support to the hospitals and providers currently providing uncompensated care. The Governor’s recognition that health care can’t wait is important to ensuring half a million North Carolinians gain access to affordable, quality health care.
North Carolina needs a better budget that helps every community thrive. Legislative leaders should begin the process of negotiation based on the responsibility to govern for all not just the few.