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Two groups begin voter education effort on NC budget

Posted March 15, 2012 6:31 p.m. EDT
Updated March 15, 2012 7:33 p.m. EDT

— Two conservative-leaning organizations have started what they call a voter education effort to highlight what they say are good things in the Republican-written budget for North Carolina state government.

The Americans for Prosperity Foundation and John William Pope Civitas Institute unveiled Thursday the "NC Real Solutions" initiative, which includes radio and television ads and a web site.

Foundation state director Dallas Woodhouse said his group plans to spend $500,000 over the next month on the effort that attempts to combat what he calls lies about the budget.

"The critics of this legislature have gone across this state and just told whoppers of inaccuracies of tens of thousands of teachers laid off, which has just absolutely been untrue," Woodhouse said.

The ad running in most major North Carolina TV markets says the budget lowered taxes and hired more state-funded teachers. Democrats argue the budget slashed spending on health care and the environment and forced local school districts to eliminate thousands of jobs.

Brian Lewis, government relations manager for the North Carolina Association of Educators, said the ad doesn't give a true picture of classroom cuts. More than 500 teachers and 1,200 teaching assistants have been laid off statewide, he said.

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Online:

NC Real Solutions: http://ncrealsolutions.com/