Sen. Jim Davis, R-Franklin, faced a group of 50 Macon County teachers and staff last Tuesday in the library of South Macon Elementary School, and it was not a happy crowd.
Waynesville leaders will face a tough choice in coming weeks: either raise the property tax rate by 3 cents or cut town services and amenities.
That’s the message Town Manager Marcy Onieal shared with Waynesville aldermen at a budget workshop last week.
From animal shelters to free clinics to food banks, nonprofit organizations of all stripes make a yearly knock on county commissioners doors, hoping to be included in the upcoming budget. But as the recession marches on, those knocks are becoming more frequent — and more costly — for Jackson County commissioners.
As this year’s budget talks kicked off, Macon County Schools presented its petition for a $500,000 funding increase to pay for teacher raises and insurance increases, but County Manager Derek Roland’s proposed budget doesn’t include any of those extra dollars. He’s asking commissioners to fund the school system at $7.3 million, the same amount as last year.
Haywood County Schools may have a tough choice to make in coming weeks: add additional teachers or give existing teachers a half-percent raise?
The Haywood School Board hoped to do both in the coming year, but likely won’t have enough money to make both a reality.
Haywood County Schools will see a slight budget increase from county commissioners next year, although it will fall far short of what school officials asked for.
The school system will get an extra $280,000 from the county — about a quarter of the $1.1 million increase the school system would have liked. But school officials were quick to give county commissioners an ‘A’ for effort.
Hospitals in North Carolina face a catch-22 of the worst kind: the $600 million kind, the kind they have no control over, the kind that involves politics.
Hospitals in North Carolina are seeing a financial hit they can ill-afford after state lawmakers in the General Assembly turned down the federal government’s offer to expand Medicaid last year. It would have added 500,000 uninsured poor to Medicaid rolls.
Republican lawmakers in North Carolina are standing by their controversial decision last year to deny Medicaid expansion to 500,000 low-income people who otherwise lacked health coverage.
Some Democrats in the General Assembly are pushing to revisit Medicaid expansion, however. The legislative season had barely gotten underway last week when a group of Democratic lawmakers introduced a bill that would reverse course on Medicaid expansion.
Local school leaders and educators are celebrating last week’s court ruling declaring a 2013 law that doles out a small raise for 25 percent of the state’s teachers — no more and no less — unconstitutional.
School vouchers are back on the table for the 2014-15 school year following a ruling in the North Carolina Supreme Court last week. In March, N.C. Superior Court Judge Robert Hobgood issued a preliminary injunction against the Opportunity Scholarship Program, preventing the voucher program from going into effect until the court could hear the case and issue a final ruling.