State budget passes 2nd reading in NC House

Capitol Report
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RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Despite some opposition from Democrats, the North Carolina House of Representatives passed the state’s $25.7 billion budget Wednesday night.

It passed by a 72-41 margin. It will need to pass a third vote on Thursday.

The budget plan includes one-time bonuses and pay raises for educators. K-12 teachers would see raises of 5.5 percent on average over the next two years. It also contains some provisions educators have wanted to see for years, including eliminating the requirement that teachers pay $50 to help hire a substitute when they take a personal day and restoring the salary boost for teachers with master’s degrees.

“Even though it has some things that we like, that the Governor has been pushing for, it really falls woefully short of where we need to be,” said House Democratic Leader Rep. Robert Reives.

The budget also includes policy changes that Democrats say they oppose, including a new requirement that lesson plans and instructional materials be posted online to give people the opportunity to review them and potentially challenge them as being “unfit” for students. The move comes as Republicans have tried to pass bills addressing critical race theory in schools.

“To me, we’ve gotten to a scary point with education,” said Reives. “You give the teachers a raise, but then you add another million bosses.”

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