September 6th, 2012
FALLING BEHIND IN HIGHER EDUCATION
North Carolina has long recognized the broad value to our economy and society of collective investments in education and training. Over the next decade, greater investments in higher education will be essential if North Carolina’s middle class is to stabilize and grow.
By 2018, nearly 6 out of every 10 jobs in the state will require post-secondary education or training – whether that is an industry-recognized certificate, associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree, or a higher degree. However, declining state investments in institutions of post-secondary education have put such credentials out of reach for many students. In addition to restricting access, these budget choices have resulted in fewer state dollars for investments in cutting-edge programming relevant for high-tech fields and in proven teaching methods that improve student success.
Read more and download our HIGHER EDUCATION STATE BUDGET TOOLKIT HERE.
August 24th, 2012
FALLING BEHIND IN K-12 EDUCATION
North Carolina is growing, and without adequate and sustained investment in public education, the highly educated workforce needed to attract and retain good paying jobs will simply not materialize. Equally important as the economic return of the state’s education investments are the tremendous social benefits of having an educated population.
Education must be a cornerstone of North Carolina’s long-term plan for economic development. But declining state investments in public education are being felt in the place that matters most for our state’s children – the classroom.
July 5th, 2012
BACKWARDS BUDGET BECOMES LAW
Once again, the General Assembly has overridden a gubernatorial veto of the state budget and given final approval to a proposal that puts North Carolina on a path to mediocrity. To be clear, this budget will have real consequences for North Carolinians. Here are a few key takeaways:
This Budget & Tax Center graphic that shows how state spending in the final budget stacks up against the current law budget and pre-recession levels. Notice that slight increases in spending in this year’s budget adjustments do little to put our state on a path to adequately funding many key areas of our state’s infrastructure. Click image to enlarge.
SENATE BUDGET: AN EMBARRASSMENT
The Budget and Tax Center put together a graph of the Senate budget proposal compared to the current law budget, the Governor’s proposed budget, and inflation-adjusted pre-Recession state spending. The data tells the story of how backwards the Senate budget is clearly. Click to enlarge.
May 30th, 2012
HOUSE BUDGET LEAVES INVESTMENT FAR BELOW PRE-RECESSION LEVELS.
The North Carolina House passed a revised budget proposal for FY 12-13 on May 30th that continues to fall short of meeting the need for quality education, healthy communities and families, clean air and water, and safe neighborhoods.
Under this budget, there will still be fewer dollars for need-based grants for university students, fewer slots for children in NC Pre-K, a continued shortfall in Medicaid, fewer dollars to provide public transit in our urban communities, and further reductions to environmental protections and infrastructure next year. Moreover, legislative leaders have chosen to rely on $815 million in one-time money to partially meet the state’s recurring needs.
North Carolina must rebuild and reinvest after this historic economic downturn. Recommitting to support North Carolina’s growth and opportunity requires a balanced and sustainable approach, one that responsibly looks at revenue as a tool to improve the long-term fiscal condition of the state. The House budget proposes a set of piecemeal corrections to a fundamentally flawed biennial budget. Anything less than a long-term, balanced approach will fail to address the fundamental needs of North Carolina today and in the future.
Click the images above for large scale viewing.