NC Budget and Tax Center

North Carolina’s productivity is slowing, lagging behind much of the South

Last week, the Bureau of Economic Analysis released the latest data on economic growth measured by the production of goods and services for all 50 states.  North Carolina’s annual growth rate of 1.6 percent ranked the state 19th in the country.  This was below other Southeastern states (1.8 percent) and slightly above the national average (1.5 percent).

North Carolina’s economic performance on this measure is falling short of its potential even in comparison to the South. Neighboring states of South Carolina and Tennessee outperformed the Old North State, as did Georgia.

NC Budget and Tax Center, Trump Administration

Five major ways that the Trump budget would hurt rural North Carolina

Cameron, NC. Photo by Gerry Dincher.

If your budget is a reflection of your priorities, it’s clear that President Trump does not prioritize the well-being of rural North Carolina and connecting more people to opportunity.

1. The plan cuts 21% of USDA, which is critical to rural North Carolina.

Trump’s plan proposes a cut of more than 21 percent to the USDA—a $4.7 billion dollar reduction to its funding of various initiatives that support the development of rural America and the food systems that support our country. This would directly harm rural communities and agriculture across the heart of North Carolina. Moreover, Trump’s budget would decimate rural infrastructure, even as communities seek to remain attractive to business and residents, new and old.

2. Budget threatens rural development dollars that are key to thriving rural communities.

More than 3 million North Carolinians live in rural regions of the state. Since 2009, the Old North State received $12 billion dollars in rural development funding from the USDA. From these awards, North Carolina received 54,747 Single-Family Housing Loan Guarantees totaling $7.5 billion dollars, 62 Electric Direct Loans and Loans Guarantees ($1.5 billion dollars), 3,537 rental assistance cases ($500 million dollars) and 372 Community Facilities Direct Loans ($710 million dollars), to name just four programs. According to Trump’s budget, these programs would be threatened with cuts. The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery is being completely eliminated, which represents 21 percent of grant dollars to rural and tribal communities. Read more