McCrory: NC needs to 'be careful of' federal funding

Posted March 12, 2013
Updated March 13, 2013

— Gov. Pat McCrory told Fox Business News Chanel personality Neil Cavuto that North Carolina would strongly defend its status as a right-to-work state, to the point of being careful what money the state accepts from the federal government.

The governor's appearance on the show was prompted by MetLife's decision to move jobs from four Northeast states and California to North Carolina. During the interview, Cavuto repeatedly patted McCrory on the back for being a "low-tax state" governor, an assessment that runs counter to the assessment of many conservatives. For his part, McCrory talked about quality of life, available workforce and other factors that lured the insurer to the state.

McCrory didn't mention the $87 million incentives grant that the state gave MetLife. He said Monday that "There's no doubt that (incentives) was a factor in their decision-making. To what degree, I don't know." It didn't come up during the Cavuto interview.

But Cavuto did point out that North Carolina's unemployment rate was still stuck above 9 percent.

"What is the problem?" he asked the governor.

McCrory pinned the blame on tax increases authorized in the last five to 10 years and said the North Carolina was embarking on a tax reform effort that would lower the corporate and personal income taxes.

The conversation then turned to North Carolina's right-to-work status and how important that was in McCrory's estimation to luring jobs to the state. Such laws limit union organizing, prohibiting rules that require anyone to join a union.

McCrory pledged to work with other governors to protect state's right to determine their own right-to-work status.

"The other thing we have to be careful of, though, is not accept federal money, which often requires union work. Those are other things we have to fight," McCrory said. 

Resisting the strings that come with federal funding is not a new idea. In fact, avoiding future federal orders and cost increases was a key reasons behind the bill McCrory's recently signed that turns down expansion of Medicaid in North Carolina. 

But it's unclear what federal funding McCrory might have been referring to during his Fox Business News appearance. Emails to McCrory's communications director and press secretary weren't immediately returned Tuesday night.

However, its' worth noting that the state receives billions of dollars worth of federal funding in various ways every year. For example:

  • $10.9 billion in federal Medicaid funding.
  • $545 million in research grants for UNC Chapel Hill.
  • $1.25 billion in federal highway funding

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  • jackjones2nc Mar 13, 2013

    Ceanothus - Not only is McCrory giving our tax dollars to other states, McCrory is ensuring that struggling families will be hit even harder. Republicans are pursuing a 3rd-world North Carolina.

  • Terkel Mar 13, 2013

    "McCrory is giving our tax dollars to other states."

    No, the Feds are doing that.

  • jackjones2nc Mar 13, 2013

    McCrory is giving our tax dollars to other states.

  • jackjones2nc Mar 13, 2013

    Regardless of what Republicans spew, tax cuts do not create jobs. Some tax incentives may divert some jobs, but the result is nothing more than a "race to the bottom".

  • Danny22 Mar 13, 2013

    What the low info voters don't realize is that the feds will fund obamacare for a couple yrs, then PASS along the costs to the state. Obamacare, the biggest disaster in American history.

  • ramseytam Mar 13, 2013

    Right to work state. And no right to fire state. I was LET GO from my job and they would give me no reason. Out of 1100 managers I ranked in the top 10. Two weeks before I was let go I got a $3500 annual salary increase. I was making almost as much as my DM. They gave me my vacation pay and sent me on my way. I signed up for unemployment $525 weekly and they did not even try to stop me for getting it. Now I am out of a job. Too old to go back to school. No more jobs in my pay scale and let me tell you it's hard to go from $26 a hour to $10 a hour and now our wonderful governor is going to stop my unemployment. I live in the mountains and can not just up and move to where the jobs are for I have a elderly mother I have to help take of.

  • movingforward Mar 13, 2013

    We will see how far that`s goes when a major disaster hits NC. And when the groundwater is so contaminated that we have to truck fresh drinking in from other places. Why would he turn down federal money? Because it`s all about the how to keep the middle class down, Plus the fact of who is at the head of the federal gov`t. Need I say anymore. Right-to-work states make it so easy for companies to fire you, maybe, just because they don`t like the way you smell or some crazy reason like that.

  • mrday69 Mar 13, 2013

    Last I checked...the Federal Government was 17 TRILLION DOLLARS in debt...but don't worry about that.

  • Krimson Mar 13, 2013

    Stay away from "federal money"??? Where does McCrony think that money comes from??? It comes from MY AND EVERYONE ELSE'S POCKET via federal taxes. When McCrony says he's "staying away Federal Money", what he is really saying is "we're going to give your tax money to DC to spend on States other than NC".

  • vply2000 Mar 13, 2013

    Check out the $1.3 Billion in state incentives. Policy of both parties to give tax breaks to their "winners" and stiff the "right to workers". FOLLOW the Money....