This week our State Legislature put out a 300+ page budget for 2018-2019. This is part two of last year’s two-year budget and one might assume that we write two year budgets so that we don’t have to redo them every year. But one would be wrong.
This budget is packed with partisan pork. It directs tax money to schools in the district of a closely contested Republican, organizations that fight women’s rights, hunting clubs and promotes increased segregation in some public schools.
The budget includes raises for teachers but mostly ignores other state employees, like cops and detention officers. While paying teachers more it does nothing to increase classroom spending, implying that teachers can use their raises to pay for more supplies.
This budget makes one-time investments in mental health and broadband expansion while ignoring the billions of dollars turned away by Medicaid expansion and corporate tax breaks.
There are so many problems with this budget that it is clear now why Republicans did not want it to see the light of day until it was too late to do much about it. There was no open debate by Democrats or even by constituents. It was written behind closed doors, without any public discussion.
Well if they think they can slide this budget under the doors of North Carolinians, then run away in the night they are wrong because “Here’s Johnny”