Gov, GOP in Round 2 of benefits fight
The House votes today on a second attempt to restore federal benefits to some 45,000 jobless North Carolinians. But it's tied (again) to a budget measure Perdue doesn't like.Posted — Updated
The House is expected to vote this afternoon on a second attempt to change a formula that would allow some 45,000 jobless North Carolinians to start receiving federal benefit checks again.
In their first attempt at a fix, GOP leaders linked the benefits to a measure that would have forced the governor to either accept whatever budget the Republicans sent her, or manage the state for a year on 13 percent less money than her budget proposed.
“She’s been incommunicado on this subject. I’m coming back with another alternative. The governor hasn’t. All she’s done is said 'no.' That’s not good leadership,” Tillis said.
The GOP majorities in the House and Senate are likely to approve H439 and send it to Perdue by next week. If the statement from Perdue’s office Wednesday night is any indication, it won’t get a warm welcome, at least in its current form:
"For weeks, 42,000 unemployed North Carolinians have waited for the legislature to show leadership by passing legislation that will restore their federal unemployment benefits. Instead the legislature has refused to do the right thing and played politics by passing a bill that ties unemployment benefits to the legislature’s budget games.
"And here they go again by introducing HB 439 that would tie unemployment benefits to a budget bill that would cut public education by more than $1 billion. If this bill were to become law in its current form, thousands of teachers, teaching assistants and students would be held hostage by the legislature’s political games. On behalf of the 42,000 unemployed North Carolinians who have been denied benefits, I call on the General Assembly to act and pass a bill that solely addresses these federally funded unemployment benefits."
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