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A friend who is knowledgeable about the state budget gave me this factoid:
Extending the “temporary” one-cent sales-tax increase would get North Carolina through the budget crisis without laying off one teacher or teacher assistant.
No cuts in the classroom.
For Governor Perdue, that could be a fight worth fighting.
Yes, there would be cuts in education: assistant principals, guidance counselors, janitors, security officers, etc.
But no classroom cuts.
And there will inevitably be cuts in health care and human services.
But no classroom cuts.
If she proposes that, no doubt, the legislature will reject it. Fine. Let them make the classroom cuts – and take the heat.
As I blogged last week, this could be her best path to reelection.


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2 comments on “Teachers and Taxes

  1. dap916 says:

    I’m not normally a tax kinda guy, but you’ve made a very good point here, Gary. As I understand it, this would be an extension of an existing tax. If this keeps our teachers in schools, this is really a no-brainer.

    It’s like you said, other cuts will still have to be made, but there are priorities and education and keeping our teachers in our schools is one that should head the list.

    I’d be pretty upset with any legislator…or our govenor for that matter…for not going ahead with this. Hopefully it’s explained to our taxpaying citizens as you’ve explained it here. You know how things get presented so as to shade the truth and so as to turn people against policy that is good for our citizens with good consequences.

  2. Carbine says:

    The list of “good things” that could be done with just one more cent on the sales tax is endless, and always will be. Trying to wrangle a new tax (and this would be new, as the current one expires at the end of the fiscal year) by tying it to a popular program rarely works, and I doubt this attempt would either. The average citizen of this state knows that there is a deep recession ongoing and that people from all walks of life and professions–except teachers and government workers–have had their livelihoods put on the line. Most will not see the very minor reductions in the teaching workforce that are surely coming as that big of a deal, and they would resent the extension of the “temporary” sales tax increase to further insulate teachers from the real world.

    And while most people do not realize that the teaching workforce has grown considerably faster than the student population (which ought to be the driving factor), those that do will have even less sympathy for teachers facing layoffs.

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