State News

Easley signs state budget

Posted July 15, 2008
Updated July 16, 2008

State budget

— Gov. Mike Easley on Wednesday signed the 2008-09 state budget, which lawmakers passed a week ago.

Easley had until midnight Friday to sign the $21.4 billion spending plan into law or veto it. He also could have let the bill become law without his signature.

The governor hasn't spoken publicly about whether he likes the spending plan. Easley administration officials have said the bill was improved because lawmakers reduced spending and delayed two tax breaks.

His office issued a two-sentence statement Wednesday afternoon to acknowledge he had signed the budget bill.

"The governor has signed the budget and thanks legislators for their hard work. He looks forward to the General Assembly finishing work on important remaining issues, including legislation on drought, home foreclosure and mental health," the statement said.

Rep. Mickey Michaux, D-Durham, the House's top budget negotiator, said he believed Easley was holding out for additional money for his Learn and Earn alternative high school initiative. Any additional funds would have to go into another bill, however.


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  • WRALwontdeletemyaccount Jul 17, 2008

    "Kids just can't play at home until Kindergarten, they need to be in a preschool program for 1 or preferably 2 years to help them be successful"

    Nonsense...this is just politically correct rhetoric.

    Preschool results in several things:
    1) More kids being home schooled
    2) A higher dependence on the role of government in the development of YOUR children.
    3) A justification for larger State government budgets (their motivation)

    What it does NOT do, is result in any measurable increase in the performance of kids in school. Even with all this government control (or is it BECAUSE of the government control) we have one of the highest drop out rates in the country and some of the lowest standardized test scores .

  • diana123 Jul 17, 2008

    so what percentage increase did the state employees receive?

  • Tired_of_LIBERALS Jul 17, 2008

    Teachers shouldn't be government employees!!!

  • tchr313 Jul 17, 2008

    As for teachers getting raises, YES I am a teacher--so of course I am all for teacher raises. Having said that, the public doesn't realize how much goes into being a teacher. Teachers are going to other states to earn more money. That causes a lot of turnover, which is not good for the students. A teacher becomes strong when he/she stays in one school, not when he/she bounces around. It really takes a good year to learn the curriculum, school rules, policies, etc. Each year after that you just build on your procedures and can expand your lessons. Therefore, I think it's only reasonable to try to get teacher pay up to the national average. I have been teaching 10 years and am just now finally making a salary I can live on. Other state employees certainly deserve raises, too, I'm not saying they don't. However, think about it this way....Teachers make all professions possible.

  • tchr313 Jul 17, 2008

    Smart Start and More at Four are GREAT programs. Many people just don't realize that PreK is pretty much REQUIRED before Kindergarten, due to the elementary curriculum being pushed down further and further. Kids just can't play at home until Kindergarten, they need to be in a preschool program for 1 or preferably 2 years to help them be successful. Many children would be fine without it, but most thrive in K due to preschool. Mom at home working with a child is great, but still not the same as a preschool experience--unless of course Mom is going to continue to homeschool.
    I fully support Smart Start and More at Four.

  • Boot-the-DC-Tyrant Jul 17, 2008

    Is his wife's trips around the world included in the budget?

    How about her gigantic pay raises?

  • cameragirl Jul 17, 2008

    As a state worker I am upset that he took so long to sign the budget. Our meager pay increase will now have to wait until August paycheck. With it being retroactive back to July 1 it will probably put some in a higher tax bracket and they won't see anything for those two months.

    Just another Easley tactic to keep money from state workers.

  • jamesjmoore999 Jul 16, 2008

    That is a lot of $60 cheeseburgers.

  • SMAPAEA Jul 16, 2008

    If the Governor had signed the budget last week, state employees would have gotten our generous raises this month, instead, we now wait until the end of August to see anything. Awesome, simply awesome.

  • WRALwontdeletemyaccount Jul 16, 2008

    Congrats Governor! Fire up another one of those $60 dollar cheese burgers why dontcha?