Fight Over Education Spending Intensifies

Mar 21, 2012

There’s a renewed fight over education funding. Dave DeWitt reports that the loss of federal stimulus money has republicans and democrats picking sides ahead of the legislature coming back to Raleigh.

Dave DeWitt: According to the state Department of Public Instruction, North Carolina made do with about 1,000 fewer teachers this year than the year before. But because the number paid for by federal money decreased, and the number paid for with state funds increased, republican leaders are boasting the state budget didn’t cut teachers, but actually added them. Outside groups, like the conservative organization Americans for Prosperity, are making the same half-true claim, in a TV ad.

The real fight is coming next month, when all the federal stimulus money used to pay teachers goes away. Perdue supports a plan to bring back a three-quarter of a cent sales tax to save teacher jobs.

Bev Perdue: The people of North Carolina I believe will support that, if they can understand it’s tied to their children.

Republican leaders in the state legislature say restoring the sales tax will not be considered when they reconvene.