Wed. Jan 19th, 2022
nc budget
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After a long, contentious process over several months, the North Carolina Legislature passed a two-year budget, including pay raises for teachers. Governor Roy Cooper gave his approval to the measure with some reservations.

The budget did not address all that Cooper hoped, but he said this:

“I will sign this budget, because, on balance, the good outweighs the bad.”

Roy Cooper, NC governor

The funding received overwhelming bi-partisan support. Here are some of the needs that the budget addresses:

The NC State Budget and Your Taxes:

  • An increase in the zero-tax bracket to $25,500 help for the lowest earners.
  • Slashes the personal income tax rate from 5.25% to 3.99% in 2022; they gradually drop to 3.99% by 2027.
  • Raises the child tax deduction credit by an additional $500 per child.
  • Removes state income tax obligations on military pensions.

Statewide Education Needs:

  • Adds a $1.5 billion increase above the existing K-12 education budget.
  • $2.6 billion set aside for public school capital projects for the next seven years.
  • Transfers $528 million from the North Carolina Education Lottery to the Needs-Based Public School Capital Building Fund, $80 million to a renovation fund, and $200 million to the Public School Capital Fund over the next two years.
  • Moves Fayetteville State University into the N.C. Promise Program, guaranteeing $500 in aid of in-state tuition each semester a student attends a participating school.

State Salaries in the New NC State Budget:

  • Pay raise of 5% for teachers over the next two years.
  • Pay raise of 5% for most other state employees.
  • All non-certified personnel and community college employees raised to at least $15 per hour, starting in 2022.
  • Disbursing a $2,800 bonus to most to most teachers, using federal funding.
  • Law enforcement, corrections officers, and 24-hour residential center employees will receive a $1,500 bonus.
  • Using federal funds to pay most state employees–$1,500 to those earning under $75,000 and $1,000 to those making over $75,000.
  • Setting aside $100 million in state teacher salary supplements for low-wealth counties (including Bertie County) to assist them with teacher recruitment.

Infrastructure Funding:

  • $84 million of funds to allow Elizabeth City State University to build a flight school, residence hall, dining hall, and sky bridge.
  • $1 billion towards expanding broadband in North Carolina.
  • $6 billion in cash to pay down debt and to help fund infrastructure projects.
  • $16.1 billion in infrastructure over the next ten years.
  • $283 million to expand the Wilmington Harbor.

Bertie’s Bazemore voted “no” because she felt the budget did not address enough needs within District 3. She explained that the plan excludes priorities for Tier 1 counties. Regardless, it moved forward to the governor and communities will begin to benefit from the impact.

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