$24 Billion Budget Compromise. What does it mean to Education?

Vector concept of investment in education with coins books and scales

Lincolnton, NC ( L TOWN RADIO ) – Matthew J. Burton

As L Town Radio recently reported on North Carolina House Senior Appropriations Chairman Jason Saine (District 97 – Lincoln) announcing that he has successfully secured several critical investments and grants in the state budget compromise for the citizens of Lincoln County. 

The $24 billion budget compromise, which was released yesterday, is expected to be approved and sent to the Governor by the end of the week. Overall, the budget further invests in education, increases teacher and state employee salaries, funds a new statewide school construction initiative and allocates disaster recovery resources.  Many questions have been raised for a breakdown of what it means for education in North Carolina and in Lincoln County. 

With the $24 billion budget compromise Let’s break down the numbers and answer the questions of where the money will be spent on education.  

$13,071,054 for Lincoln County Schools Capital Money and $45,000 for a Literacy Vehicle for Lincoln County Public Library. 

K-12 Public Education 
1. Increases funding for public education by more than $1.43 billion over two years. 
2. Invests more than $91 million in school safety measures to protect children in schools, including $52 million in new recurring funding for additional mental health professionals and school resource officers. 
3. Allocates $4.4 billion over the next 10 years for a statewide school construction initiative. 
4. Provides $3 million to provide free meals for students currently eligible for only reduced-price lunches. 
5. Adds $15 million in new funding for classroom supplies, and provides $150 per teacher in the first year and $200 in the second year for teachers to purchase classroom supplies. 

Higher Education 
1. Total Community College Capital Funding over 10 years – $400 million 
2. Fully funds the request from community colleges for workforce development training programs.  
3. Increases funding for the community colleges career coaches’ program. 
4. $632 million in capital projects for the UNC System and $90.8 million in capital for Community Colleges. 
5. Continues the commitment to N.C. Promise, giving students an opportunity to attend three state universities for only $500 a semester. 

Salaries and Benefits 

1. Most state employees get a 5% salary increase – the largest salary increases in more than a decade. 
2. Teachers will receive an average raise of 3.9% over the biennium.  
3. Teachers with 25+ years of experience get a $500 bonus in each year of the biennium. 
4. Provides 5 non-expiring Bonus Leave days for eligible State employees and Community College employees. 
5. Provides funding for a one-time 0.5% Retiree Supplement for each year of the biennium. 

Rep. Jason Saine

L Town Radio spoke with Rep. Saine tonight.  “I am very proud of the budget compromise that we have crafted with Senate leadership and with input from stakeholders across the state,” Saine said. “I am glad to have secured funding for needs in Lincoln County that I believe will help all of our citizens.” 

L Town Radio will continue to reach out to state leaders and continue to report the updates with the budget as we receive them.  A Great step for Education in North Carolina and Lincoln County.  

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