NC Budget and Tax Center

Worth Tracking: Doctors, hospitals, and health industry groups are opposing the proposed Health Care Act

Earlier this week House Republicans in Congress produced a bill called the American Health Care Act to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. It is important for all Americans, regardless of political party, to know that many professional medical groups and industry stakeholders have expressed publicly that they have serious concerns about the newly proposed bill.

A current list of major groups opposed the new health care plan includes:

Interest groups and industry stakeholders:
  • The AARP
  • American Hospital Association
  • Federation of American Hospitals
  • America’s Essential Hospitals
  • Families USA
Doctors’ and nurses’ groups
  • The American Medical Association
  • American Nurses Association
  • American College of Physicians
  • National Nurses United
  • National Physicians Alliance
  • Association of American Physicians and Surgeons
  • American Academy of Pediatrics

 

NC Budget and Tax Center

Tax cap amendment would lock in tax cuts for wealthy and profitable corporations

Yesterday the Senate Finance committee voted to move forward a bill that would amend the state Constitution to cap the income tax rate at the low and arbitrary rate of 5.5 percent. The bill will ensure that the tax cuts for the wealthy and profitable corporations since 2013 will remain permanent. It will lock in the cuts to public schools, health and services that promote thriving communities.

It is fiscally irresponsible to limit the choices of future lawmakers as they seek to meet the needs of a growing state and changing economy.  The result over time is likely to be more cuts to core public services and increases in other taxes that ask more from middle- and low-income North Carolinians.

Here are a few key flaws with locking into the state constitution the income tax rate: Read more

2018 Fiscal Year State Budget, NC Budget and Tax Center

Why won’t North Carolina leaders think long-term?

Governor Cooper announced a clear vision for where North Carolina should aim: one of the top 10 most educated states in the country, an attractive place for people and business, and a state that supports the health and well-being of all residents.

Thinking long-term isn’t the norm for many leaders in North Carolina. Many argue that it’s the nature of elected officials to think in terms of their next election cycle. That may be part of the answer, but a very practical issue exists in North Carolina:  We literally can’t afford to think long-term.

Included with the Governor’s recommended biennial budget that was released last week is a chart that projects out the state’s revenue and anticipated expenditures over the next five years. The chart provides a troubling picture of just how close we are budgeting, even as we fail to meet all our existing needs. By 2021, revenue collections for North Carolina are anticipated to be $100.7 million above anticipated expenditures. These anticipated expenditures account for enrollment growth in public schools and Medicaid, costs of maintaining capital investments, paying debt obligations and maintaining a commitment to get teacher pay to the national average.

Read more

2018 Fiscal Year State Budget, NC Budget and Tax Center

Governor’s budget makes important investments in Pre-K and child care

Gov. Cooper’s budget proposes lofty goals to improve North Carolina’s education system. A significant portion of that promise is focused on investing in high quality child care and increasing the number of children attending Pre-K. Investing in our state’s youngest and, often times, most vulnerable children is absolutely a step in the right direction. Here are four things you should know about how the Governor’s budget invests in children. Read more

2018 Fiscal Year State Budget, NC Budget and Tax Center

Governor’s Justice & Public Safety budget invests in safe and healthy communities

The Governor’s proposed Justice & Public Safety budget for fiscal year 2018 includes $161 million, a 6.2 percent increase, in additional state funding compared to the current fiscal year budget. The majority of the additional funds are for pay raises for state employees along with other targeted investments, particularly in the area of public safety.

Here are notable spending priorities in the Governor’s budget. Read more