With a charging Republican majority in North Carolina, the State is getting ready to make some serious budget cuts. People are going to have to sacrifice, to be sure. And the deeper and sooner that sacrifice occurs, the better off the financial stability of the State.
Yet, no one can accept that fact.
Just look at reports coming out of the Unions:
“Every single year at this same point in time, there is the budget dance … There is always immediately going into an assumption that we are going to cut services and we’re going to do bad things to public employees,” said Dana Cope, executive director of the State Employees Association of North Carolina. “This is the first time that the budget deficit that we’re talking about is real.”
Yeah, and every single year at this same point in time plus some number of weeks, a deal is worked out with the Democrats and nothing changes. Except the amount of money that North Carolina is in debt; it just gets bigger and bigger.
And to make it worse, the concept that budget actions are required never quite makes it into the news:
RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina state employees and public school teachers are often the place lawmakers look to consider significant budget cuts, as three-quarters of the state’s $19 billion budget is allocated to salaries and benefits.
But anxiety levels for the more than 300,000 teachers, university workers and other state employees have soared early in the legislative session with the Republican leadership’s approach to closing a projected $3.7 billion budget gap for the upcoming fiscal year. Leaders have refused to extend two temporary taxes that would have trimmed the shortfall by $1.3 billion.
Look. We’re all anxious. We’re ALL worried. But something has to change, we simply can NOT continue on this path of debt and more debt. Soon we’ll look like California, or New Jersey or New York. And no one wants that.
But how bad is it? Really? How BAD do the folks in Government, state and local have it. Education too….what’s it like out there?
In the last 10 years, private sector employment has seen massive churn with jobs not yet back to Jan 2001 levels. Government, State and Local Education? Tickin’ nicely. Slow and steady upwards growth. Hardly even a downward tick.
Since the most recent recession?
Now let’s look at North Carolina:
Nope. Rather than protest that the state workers are having to sacrifice, we need to ask ourselves why they haven’t yet. And then get the job done!