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Legislature’s ‘philosophical shift’ means more cuts for public education (video)

NC House and Senate members spending their first full week back in their home districts will undoubtedly be talking up tax reform and efforts to spur economic growth over the seven-month session. But even as lawmakers tout their business-friendly agenda, Ran Coble with the NC Center for Public Policy Research says they will need to own up to another round of cuts made to public education:

“From the public schools you are taking almost 4,000 teaching assistants. There’s no raise for teachers,” explained Coble. “You’ve got cuts to the Department of Public Instruction, cuts to things that get people into the teaching profession, which I worry about long-term.”

Coble, who appeared on News & Views with Chris Fitzsimon last weekend, notes the latest budget also cuts the UNC-system by another $66 million. While the community college system fared better, its students will see a $2.50 per credit hour increase in tuition.

To hear Coble’s take on the winners and losers of this legislative session, visit the Radio Interview section of the NC Policy Watch website where you can listen online or download a podcast of the extended interview.

For a closer look at the numbers from this legislative session, be sure to read Monday’s Fitzsimon File.

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2 Comments

  1. Doug

    July 29, 2013 at 10:33 pm

    How is ~$400,000,000 increase in spending a cut? I guess in liberal/progressive education 1+1 comes out to a negative number. Or more likely, if what you hope to get does not come through it is a cut then that gives you something to whine about.

  2. Doug Gibson

    July 30, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    From the previous post at Progressive Pulse:

    “Let’s examine the numbers. In the 2008 fiscal year budget, North Carolina spent $7,714,429,569 on K-12 public education. But when you adjust those numbers for inflation, that amount would have been $8,402,393,062 in today’s dollars.

    The 2014 fiscal year budget will spend $500 million less than the 2008 inflation-adjusted budget, in the amount of 7,867,960,649. And the 2014 budget fails to keep up with the needs of a growing student population. The Office of State Budget and Management estimates that $7,984,924,757 is actually needed to maintain current service levels of education.

    So while the 2014 budget would spend more than the previous year’s budget, the appropriation isn’t enough to keep up basic services.”

    I bolded the bit about The Office of State Budget and Management because that’s the part of the government headed up by Art Pope, so I figured we could all rely on his assessment.

    And so, in other words, Doug’s “$400 million increase” doesn’t keep pace with inflation, and it doesn’t take into account the fact that we have more students in the system. He doesn’t seem to get that. Yet more evidence—as if any were needed—that Doug and his ilk are the last people you’d want to put in charge of a government.

    On the bright side, though—maybe all those increased salaries going to state cabinet officials and all those people working for Basnight and Tillis can be paid in 2008 dollars. I’m sure the governor would be okay with that, right?