GOP 'into the funnel' on budget

State House and Senate leaders say they're on target to finish their budget proposal by June 1.

Posted Updated

Laura Leslie
Updated: see below 

House Speaker Thom Tillis says House budget leaders will begin discussions on potential spending cuts in subcommittees this afternoon.

Tillis says he expects most House budget deliberations will be completed by the end of next week. While the House is about a week behind its target, he says lawmakers should still meet their final budget goal of June 1.

At this morning’s weekly press conference, Tillis said reduction targets range from 12 percent to 15 to 16 percent. Today, some subcommittees will see lists of possible cuts.

Update: Tillis later said options menus for all 6 House budget subcommittees will be posted online when they meet this afternoon, expected before 5pm. 

“Next week, we will begin to take the votes on specific areas that we’ve identified as most likely the targets for spending reductions,” he said.

Few details on the spending plan were available this morning, but Tillis did say the House budget would likely include the governor’s proposed cut to the corporate tax rate, though it may need to be phased in over time.

The speaker added he expects some slowdown for other measures currently working their way through House committees.

“We’re getting into the funnel on budget execution and redistricting,” Tillis said. “They’re complex, important matters, but they’re not necessarily first on our agenda. We have to be absolutely certain that we have the capacity to get done, in the time-frame we said we would get done, these other matters.”

On the Senate side, President Pro Tem Phil Berger said he expects the charter school reform bill will be on Wednesday's calendar for a concurrence vote. But he says Senate Republicans haven't yet decided whether they’ll agree to the House version.

“We’re some concerned with what happened to the bill when it got over to the House,” Berger said. “We’ll have some discussion, we’ll take it up.”

Berger also talked about the Holden pardon scheduled for a vote in this afternoon’s special session in the Old Senate Chambers.

“There was a certain ability to kind of close the circle by having the vote at the Capitol,” Berger said. “It does address something a lot of historians feel is a wrong in our history. The Senate in 1871 is the body that took that action. The Senate in 2011 is the body that will undo that action.”

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