Local Politics

Moore, Perdue Unveil Economic Package, Campaign Finance Plans

Posted March 4, 2008 11:48 a.m. EST
Updated March 4, 2008 4:36 p.m. EST

— State Treasurer Richard Moore, a Democratic candidate for governor, on Tuesday unveiled a stimulus package he said would strengthen the state economy and help financially strapped families.

The plan includes freezing property taxes for seniors, eliminating the child care subsidy waiting list, issuing $1.5 billion in transportation bonds, raising the minimum wage by $1 and offering free community college tuition for high school graduates, a prepaid college tuition plan and small business tax relief.

North Carolina is one of 30 states where the minimum wage is higher than that mandated by the federal government. The state requires employers to pay $6.15 an hour, compared to $5.85 required by the federal government.

In July, the minimum wage in North Carolina will increase to $6.55 an hour, and it will go up again in July 2009 to $7.25 an hour.

“North Carolina’s families are looking for a governor who is focused on helping them make ends meet in a slowing economy. My economic stimulus plan will ensure that incomes keep up with the cost of inflation and that our citizens have the skills they need to secure good jobs,” Moore said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue, the main rival for the Democratic nomination, said she would eliminate special interest money in the race.

Perdue said she would create an endowment fund to which businesses, organizations and citizens could donate an unlimited amount through their tax forms. The goal is to generate $4 million to $5 million a year, and funds would be distributed equally among candidates.