RALEIGH -- North Carolina Senate Republicans have unveiled a two-year state budget proposal that sticks to earlier spending limits even with recent news of a massive revenue windfall.
The Senate will vote on the spending plan this week.
The measure sticks to spending caps agreed to with House counterparts. Those numbers were set before economists announced the state would take in $6.5 billion more than expected. The bill puts much of that extra money in a savings reserve and an infrastructure construction fund, and makes deeper tax cuts than Republicans originally pitched.
State employee and teacher raises fall short of what Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper proposes.
Here are some highlights from the proposal:
- $4.3 billion would go to the state capitol and infrastructure fund over the next two years
- Most state employees including teachers will receive a 3 percent raise over 2 years. Federal funds would be used to provide bonuses to state employees. Employees making under $75,000 would get a $1,500 bonus. Those making more than $75,000 would get a $1,000 bonus.
- The K-12 education budget would include money for each school district in the state to have one psychologist
- HBCUs are set to receive an additional $500 million
- $10 million would be used to test rape kits to address the rape kit backlog
- $40 million in federal funding would go to food banks
- $12.8 million of federal funding would go to the State Fair to make up for lost revenue due to the pandemic
- $5.7 million would be for state aquariums
- $1.9 million would go to the state zoo