Sunday, August 31 2014 3:28 PM EDT2014-08-31 19:28:29 GMT
Disturbing pictures of an injured kindergartner from Pascagoula have made a mother's call for action go viral online.More >>
Disturbing pictures of an injured kindergartner from Pascagoula have made a mother's call for action go viral online. Friends and family of a Pascagoula kindergarten student have created a Facebook page and GoFundMe.com account claiming the girl was attacked on the playground this week by another student.More >>
RALEIGH, NC (AP/WECT) - The North Carolina House has completed debate on its version of the state government budget for the next two years.
After more than three hours of debate Thursday, the chamber voted 77-40 in favor of the plan. Lawmakers also voted mostly along party lines Wednesday while giving the measure tentative approval.
The Senate passed its own budget three weeks ago is now expect to reject the House changes, leading to a conference committee aiming to work out differences and get a final plan to Gov. Pat McCrory by the end of the month.
House and Senate Republicans likely will have to work out many of their differences on their competing tax plans first to figure out how much money they'll have to spend.
The chamber voted 77-41 Wednesday night to the proposal written largely by Republicans. House members debated for seven hours and voted on more than 25 amendments.
"The budget that was approved by the North Carolina House today continues our efforts to put the state's fiscal house in order," said House Speaker Thom Tillis in an email release after the vote. "We have made significant improvements to the state budget since we inherited a multi-billion dollar deficit two years ago. Once again, the House has passed a balanced budget that reduces taxes, and that is a significant accomplishment."
The two chambers should begin negotiations in earnest next week with the aim of getting a compromise to Gov. Pat McCrory by the end of the month. The competing plans each spend $20.6 billion next year.
Senior House budget chairman Nelson Dollar of Cary says the House plan would move the state forward. Democrats countered that the bill would send the state backward.
House GOP leaders also wouldn't give pay raises this coming year for state employees and teachers, just like the Senate. McCrory wants 1 percent pay raises. The House would give five extra paid days of leave.
"The House budget proposal is realistic, reasonable, and responsible; placing North Carolina's fiscal house on a sound foundation for the future," Rep. Nelson Dollar (R-Wake), the Senior Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee said in an email news release from the Speaker's office "Our plan is a common-sense approach to providing the services our citizens need in the areas of education, health care, public safety, and job development."
According to the Speaker's office release, the House budget proposal also:
·prepares our state for future needs by adding $200 million to both the Savings Reserve and the Repairs & Renovations accounts, and $10 million to the Disaster Relief Reserve
·provides $28 million in capital investments
·fully funds the State Health Plan with a directive to find efficiencies moving forward
·funds the repair, renovation and expansion of National Guard Armory facilities in NC
·fully funds the State Retirement System
·reorganizes and streamlines departments, making government more efficient
·fully funds the Job Development & Investment Grant (JDIG)
·provides compensation for living victims of the state-sponsored Eugenics program
Click here to see the text of the House Budget Bill.
Click here to see the committee report explaining the Budget Bill.
Copyright 2013WECT. Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.
Tuesday, September 2 2014 7:48 AM EDT2014-09-02 11:48:52 GMT
Retiring Seventh District Congressman Mike McIntyre was inducted into The Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the highest civilian honor bestowed in the state of North Carolina. McIntyre received a certificateMore >>
Rep. Mike McIntyre has received the highest honor given by the state of North Carolina, induction into the prestigious Order of the Long Leaf Pine. More >>
Friday, August 29 2014 7:30 AM EDT2014-08-29 11:30:47 GMT
Rep. Ted Davis (R-New Hanover) and Rep. Susi Hamilton (D-New Hanover) are spearheading an effort to get Gov. Pat McCrory to call a special session of the General Assembly to deal solely with economic developmentMore >>
Local lawmakers' request for a special session is being met with some opposition tonight. Reps. Ted Davis & Susi Hamilton of New Hanover County believe a session focused solely on economic development is needed. But one conservative group is opposing the need for lawmakers to meet again to increase the JDIG program.More >>
Thursday, August 21 2014 7:37 AM EDT2014-08-21 11:37:34 GMT
Republican leaders in the General Assembly say they have reached a compromise deal on implementing new coal ash regulations, and forcing Duke Energy to close all 33 of its coal ash ponds across North Carolina. AccordingMore >>
House and senate lawmakers in the NC General Assembly passed a bill mandating cleanup of all Duke Energy coal ash ponds by the year 2029. The action follows a massive spill of coal ash into the Dan River in February from a company site in Eden. You can click on a link inside this story to see the specifics of the bill, which is now headed to the Governor's desk.More >>
Monday, August 18 2014 9:51 PM EDT2014-08-19 01:51:31 GMT
The Film and Entertainment Grant Fund proposal will go back in front of state lawmakers tomorrow and Wednesday, after House and Senate conferees made slight changes to the proposal already approved inMore >>
It appears lawmakers are moving forward with a grant fund that will replace the current Film Incentive Tax Credit that has been in place to lure film and television productions to North Carolina.More >>
Monday, August 18 2014 5:30 PM EDT2014-08-18 21:30:44 GMT
Governor Pat McCrory is appointing Senior Associate Justice Mark Martin as the new Chief Justice of North Carolina's Supreme Court. Judge Martin will replace the current Chief Justice, Sarah Parker, whoMore >>
Governor Pat McCrory's decision to elevate Senior Associate Justice Mark Martin to be the new Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court is being met with criticism from Judge Ola Lewis of Brunswick County, who is opposing Martin for the seat in the November General Election.More >>
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