NCGA Week in Review: Budget Update

May 4, 2011

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Update: House Votes on Budget Plan

The full House tentatively approved its $19.3 billion budget plan this evening, following a near 12 hour marathon session debating amendments and the bill. The initial vote by the House was 72-47, which is notably significant in that it provides a veto-proof margin by Governor Perdue. Five Democrats – Reps. William Brisson of Bladen County, Jim Crawford of Granville County, Dewey Hill of Columbus County, Bill Owens of Pasquotank County and Tim Spear of Washington County – crossed party lines voting with the  66 Republicans and one independent.

The House proposal reduces spending by $900 million more than the Governor’s budget proposal, following instructions by House leaders to allow the temporary tax increases to expire in July. Facing an estimated $2.5 billion budget gap, the budget proposal includes $100 million in new or increased fees. The proposal additionally sets aside $230 million in reserves for a separate tax package, which is rumored to be unveiled next week. It is anticipated that about $130 million of that $230 million will be used to lower the income tax rate and provide some tax relief for small businesses. The budget proposal is scheduled to receive its final House vote tomorrow (5/3) afternoon before moving to the Senate for consideration.

Review highlights of the final budget proposal, including those amendments passed today, courtesy of WRAL: