In a letter to Speaker Tillis and President Pro Tem Berger, Governor Perdue stood up for a balanced approach to balancing the state budget that protects key investments in education, health, and public safety.
Governor Perdue not only criticized the just-passed Senate budget for passing harmful discretionary cuts down to local school districts, she also demonstrated how severe cuts to early childhood programs, community colleges, universities, Medicaid, public safety and emergency management will cause unnecessary harm and cost the state more in the long run.
In Governor Perdue’s words, by failing to take a balanced approach that includes revenue:
…the budget as currently proposed will cause severe and avoidable damage to the fundamental services of state government and will endanger education, health and public safety for our citizens.
In 1991, Republican Governor Jim Martin worked with Democrats in the General Assembly to take a balanced approach that closed the state’s revenue shortfall half with spending cuts and half with revenue. Governor Perdue now proposes closing 70 percent of the state’s current revenue shortfall with cuts and only 30 percent with revenue.
Legislative leaders would be wise to follow the example of Governor Martin and agree to a balanced approach that protects North Carolina’s vital public structures and builds on the state’s tradition of investing in people.