Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Budget Championed by Speaker Thom Tillis Fails to Provide for North Carolinians and Continues to Place Burden Squarely on Those Who Can Least Afford It


June 11, 2014


Contact: Sarah Bufkin, NC NAACP - or 404.285.3413



The Budget Championed by Speaker Thom Tillis Fails to Provide for North Carolinians and Continues to Place Burden Squarely on Those Who Can Least Afford It


Tillis Would Rather Raise Revenue from the Poor and Working Classes than Consider Repealing Unpopular Tax Breaks for the Wealthy and Corporations   


RALEIGH, NC - The North Carolina NAACP will not be distracted by the meager improvements the NC House budget proposal, released yesterday, makes over the Senate's budget from two weeks ago. The Forward Together Moral Movement cannot support this proposal from Speaker Thom Tillis and his extremist allies as it does not measure up to our highest moral and constitutional standards.


Speaker Tillis' proposal continues to leave our education system, our universities and state agencies severely underfunded. It taxes our poorest and working class families for the money to give our teachers a long-awaited pay raise. It refuses to provide health care for 500,000 North Carolinians through an expansion of Medicaid. It denies the Earned Income Tax Credit and unemployment support to thousands struggling to make ends meet. And it refuses to raise much-needed revenues by repealing last year's sweeping tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations.


"Speaker Tillis is playing games with us, but we will not and cannot be content with a budget that is simply not as bad as the one proposed by the Senate," said Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, president of the North Carolina NAACP. "We aren't going to settle for a budget that takes from the poor, the sick, the unemployed, people of color, children, the elderly and workers. Instead of repenting and repealing this year's tax cuts to the wealthiest 20 percent and to corporations, Speaker Tillis and his extremist allies intend scrape together money for teacher raises by aggressively pursuing more lottery revenue - a strategy that preys on and effectively taxes our state's low-income working families. They pick on the poor and people of color because they think these people are the least likely to push back. How little they understand about the moral conscience of this state. This is government by and for special interests with deep pockets, not for the people, and the people will not stand for it."


Many Republican lawmakers have stridently opposed the state lottery in years past, and Gov. Pat McCrory spoke just this year in his State of the State address against spending more on the "bloated and annoying" budget for lottery advertising. The Forward Together Moral Movement agrees with Gov. McCrory that the state lottery budget should be cut, not expanded. Spending state money to lure more hardworking families into buying lottery tickets is an immoral way to raise revenues for the teachers who educate their children. This General Assembly could easily find the money it needs to fund our schools and universities if it were not so dedicated to cutting taxes for the wealthy and corporations, who little need the windfall.





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