Raleigh, N.C. — When is a tax cut not a tax cut? Senators couldn't agree on that Wednesday as they gave tentative approval to a bill that changes how the state figures how much its gas tax should be.
Republicans called it a cut because it lowers the current tax rate from 37.5 cents per gallon to 35 cents for the next months. Democrats called it an increase because it prevents the tax from its expected drop to around 30 cents per gallon in July – and is projected to keep the tax higher than it would be under the current formula for the next few years.
A final vote is expected Thursday.
Also Thursday, legislative budget committees will hear that state revenue is expected to fall $271 million short of projections for fiscal 2014-15, which could lead to cuts later this spring and could present a tougher-than-expected budget fight for the 2015-16 fiscal year, which starts in July.
In other news, the State Board of Elections has whittled down estimates of thousands of potentially illegal voters to 11 people who tried to cast votes in November.