"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by editorial board member, Jess Sessoms.
The North Carolina state budget has finally been signed, sealed and delivered.
It was due July 1st – but was not finalized until 80 days past the deadline.
Politicians told voters the delay was due to the fact that they wanted to pass a strong budget for the state.
We understand that…but at what price?
While lawmakers were debating for months, thousands of teacher assistants across the state were nervously awaiting their fate.
Their jobs were on the line during the budget battle.
In some school districts teacher assistants were laid off because of the delay.
Others were allowed to work.
But how could they give 100 percent to their job knowing that any day state lawmakers could pull the plug on their livelihood.
In the end, funding was approved for both teacher assistants and for driver education.
But these two sticking points and others in the budget just didn't pop up.
Lawmakers should have been better prepared to deal with differing opinions.
We urge you to contact your representatives.
Tell them to learn from this budget process and not let history repeat itself.
After all, we hired them to get the job done on time.