Optimists hoping for a budget resolution heading into the weekend had those hopes dashed on Friday, as House negotiators cancelled a scheduled public meeting. Senators had already announced they weren’t going to show up.
Adding to the tension, Governor Pat McCrory vowed to veto the Senate’s budget plan on Thursday as he lined-up behind a House proposal for six-percent pay raises for North Carolina’s teachers.
That threat, brought this terse response from Senate President Pro-Team Phil Berger:
“The governor has been unable to sustain any of his previous vetoes in the Senate. It would be more helpful for him to work with members of both chambers of the legislature, since his unwillingness to listen to those who have an honest disagreement with him on spending priorities in favor of staging media stunts and budget gimmicks is a major reason the budget has not been finalized.”
Senators are continuing to push for teacher pay raises of 11%. The governor and House budget writers say that would require deep cuts to other areas.
The House has announced another public budget meeting for Monday afternoon at 4:30pm.