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Joint | July 29, 2014 | Press Room | Republican Budget Press Conference

Full MP3 Audio File

Okay. Thank, thank ya'll for being here. The Speaker and I and, and our members are proud to, to come before you today and announce that not only do we have a framework agreement as far as the budget is concerned, we have the details pretty much worked out, haven't printed the package up yet, which hopefully that'll be done later today and we'll be released sometime tonight, or tomorrow, probably tomorrow before it gets released. But just a few comments and the Speaker will make a few comments, then we'll be more than happy to take your questions. A little more than three years ago, Republicans assumed leadership of the general assembly and began the process of adopting policies that, first of all, addressed what we had at that time, a two and a half billion dollar budget deficit. We've worked tirelessly since that time to put the state back on solid financial footing by closing that budget deficit, reining in spending, and giving North Carolina families and businesses the largest tax cut in state history. As a result, today, more North Carolineans are going to work then ever before in three and a half years. Since Republicans were elected to the majority, over two hundred and twenty thousand new jobs have been created in the state of North Carolina, and the unemployment rate has fallen by over four percentage points. Responsible budgeting decisions and pro-growth economic policies have also enabled legislative Republicans to offer, at this time, the largest teacher pay increase in state history as part as adjustments to the 2014-2015 state budget. This budget adjustment will also provide public school educator, will provide public school educators an average seven percent pay raise, averaging three thousand five hundred dollars per teacher. The two hundred and eighty two million dollars invested in teacher pay with, with this budget will be the largest teacher pay increase in state history, moving North Carolina from forty sixth in the nation to thirty second in the nation in national teacher pay rankings. Investing two hundred and eighty two million dollars in pay raises will make North Carolina more competitive nationally and encourage the best and brightest of our teachers to make long term commitments to the state and to our students. The budget will also preserve teacher assistant positions, protect classroom funding and continue to give superintendents broad flexibility to tailor classroom spending to their district's needs. In addition to the teacher pay raise and preservation of classroom funds, the budget agreement will do a number of things and I'll just go through a list of a few. We'll reform and replace the archaic thirty seven step teacher pay system with a six step schedule and a transparent compensation package. We'll preserve current Medicaid eligibility, provide most state employees with a one thousand dollar pay raise and five bonus vacation days. We will increase pay for STEP eligible highway patrol troopers between five and six percent. We'll maintain funding at current levels for the state's university system. We'll fulfill the commitment we've made to extend supplemental pay for teachers with Masters degrees who have completed at least one course in their master level work by August 1st, 2013. The budget will also boost early career teacher pay by fourteen percent over the next two years to thirty five thousand dollars making North Carolina a leader in the Southeast and fulfilling a promise that the Governor, the Speaker, and I, and both houses of the legislature made to the people and to the teachers in this state back in February. And I'll turn it over to Speaker Tillis now. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you Senator Berger. Again, I want to thank all of the, my colleagues in the House and Senate in the room today and the dozens others who have been involved in this negotiation process. I want to personally thank Senator Berger for working side by side on resolving the differences between us. As is always the case, we have our differences. We have advocate for them vigorously and then we come together as we are today. The only, I think the thing I'd like to build on is how we got here because I think that it's critically important for everyone to understand the way that we got to the point that we are today is because of the difficult decisions we had to make in 2011 to get the fiscal house in order. But now we're in a position to provide these historic pay increases, to provide pay increases to state employees and teachers, to fulfill the promise we made to the educators back in February, and I should also say that that includes the second stage of that, that promise, for starting teachers. That's the pay raise that they'll get next year to take us from regional competitiveness and this budget and then up to above the national average in the next budget, next year. The

The five potential future rest of the LA $700,000,000 in savings reserve the liquid than $186,000,000 in this reserve for Medicaid, the garden apartment and a good job of banning the someone for CNN and serve as the active intervention that so the promise and making the most tragic and continued to fulfill that they could that be have answering questions for you to comment last Sunday of five college sells for not selling the latest social, fighting the novelist acre foot of the other tears and fall of the house and senate republican Phil Collins Committee on the sofa for the long and hard, many of them work year until law for 35 this morning working on the other from the sales and over the weekend, as well so was a prominent the route ½-and-a-10-for-three-person staff columnist-half months, if the week ended, 25,000 handful of us live a full of life. (SPEAKER CHANGES) Clear, updated some belief in senses on classroom teaching resources and five to miss the avoidance of them are made for Saturday's fire on the money allocated 50-fifth loss for the two resources, we also preserve the flexibility and those resources to the superintendent said if only for major trade got a good teacher says the money and the way they see them from clicking comebacks in the 9000-dollar to one single-a-half of the audiences from the terms of reductions during the war, average daily membership, India school systems for those funds were available from two general assembly to reallocate fell from grace and other parties are there some other companies inefficiencies cited fishing area, all served from reductions said they were taken by the end of the health and human services committee and half-cent-per- car field goal of the five in a change from good or ranging from productions home, it changes summer rates for change were specter says from 5 to 1% from a reduction in Vietnam, provider of rates there just for IBM, areas for some additional money if anything goes from the Federal-foot in areas where else to college for ages. Some of the if-I guess that out last year I think we have that, by the weekend over $300,000,000 on the mind can I think that along with other approaches were ever find this year allows this summer, if we don't want to accomplish in the session -rises above his head off from 25 via lead with the highest-Ridgeway led by those five Nasser five for $500, false and four from races promotion those employees also have the opportunity to work from 7 to 2 station from the county for the alley and -four three zero . So it's not a budget that come into force on the budget five of 75 and so has sat for those sold-out something for phone ?? (SPEAKER CHANGES) two a one-off in the family room for them to do something more than 1/2 day off, the firm's event, said the senator has been honored as head of the Paseo Adelanto and that's the defense system and they share negotiations discussions with the government apartments fell for those without even from within a form for the process as well as the star on the road.-Confidence and about half the decision on film credits in the budget committee of the senate as they are a lot of film grant programs and the other side film grant program, given the language and that should be in the ??.......

is in the budget. It's funded to the tune of $10 million in the budget, but we're converting the credit program to a grant program. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I wonder ?? question Representative Berger can you chance answer this? Do you anticipate a final vote on this by Friday or what is your timeline if that's not the timeline? [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think we're working on a timeline for a vote on Friday or Saturday after the budget. [SPEAKER CHANGES] We may be able to vote it as early as Thursday. Our rules are a little bit different than the house's. [SPEAKER CHANGES] As a matter of process where the staff need probably about 24 hours to get the document reviewed and then re-reviewed with the members and then the house rules require that it be published for a period of 24 hours before we take up a vote. So at that point it would put us earliest date would be Friday or Saturday. I'm sorry I said 48, I meant to say 48. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is there, for the teacher raises was that recurring dollars we're using or nonrecurring? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, if you take a look at the total teacher assistance allocation there was about $64, $65 million dollars currently being used for teachers. So we're accounting for it as a part of the teacher pay, but it can move back into the teacher system allotment based on what the school district want to do. All of that money is recurring. There's about $24 million, a little over $24 million, dollars in the TA allotment that is being used for purposes other than paying teachers or teacher assistants. We've made that one small segment nonrecurring. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Does any of that money come from the lottery? [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'll let you know the lottery when it was adopted several years ago funds a good bit of education and so some of the TA allotment is being funded by the lottery. Yes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] But it's not, some of the discussion we had about possibly changing advertisements and driving new revenue, that was not included. This was based on current capacity of the lottery. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Quick clarification, $1,000 pay raise, is that $1,000 plus benefits or is that $1,000? You're nodding your head. Thanks. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think afterwards about $1200 after adding all the benefits in $1239 after you fully burden it for benefits. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? is step increases regarding raises. Are those there too? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Say that again. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Step increases. ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES] We mentioned the step increases for the state troopers. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think Magistrates and Clerks had step increases as well, but otherwise state employees get the net $1,000. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think the other thing is also we're unfreezing the step plan. So now that as we move through and we have teachers retire we think that we have the step plan will allow us to find movement through the steps just through the normal cycling of folks retiring and people coming on board. We think we've got a sound sustainable step plan to build on next year. [SPEAKER CHANGES] You're missing the masters pay for teachers. This will cover a pay frame when who has already started the program. What about knowing it forward. [SPEAKER CHANGES] What we intend to do is once we have passed this budget which reforms the teacher pay plan and creates a solid platform we will then in future sessions have the opportunity to look at how we deal with incentive pay or bonus pay or additional pay for masters. What we've basically done is we've grandfathered in all of the folks who previously were eligible for master pay. We've also provided that anyone who has started a master program and taken at least one class and completed that class by August of last year is eligible for the master, I think it's the 10% bonus. We've done nothing beyond that to further expand the program. I think that's something we'll be working on as we go forward. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Why cut that as part of these negotiations? [SPEAKER CHANGES] We've not cut it, we've actually expanded it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] There was talk of extending it to anyone who got a degree on their own field going forward. That didn't make it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] It didn't make it, but I would disagree that's a cut. It's just not an expansion. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think you all could do that in the context of the significant average raise that were given to the population. So we felt like right now we needed to get a fair and equitable raise in place for the baseline. That will be a part of the discussion next year. There's generally an openness to anything that is encouraging increasetrials incompetencies in areas that we think are most important, like the stem subjects. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jim. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I understand that the ??

There's a million to fill the medical examiner system and the governor asked for 2 million dollars. [Speaker Changes] I thought the governor's proposal had a million dollars and we matched what he had in his budget. [Speaker Changes] You later called for 2 million dollars [Speaker Changes] We accepted the formal proposal [Speaker Changes] Does this budget cut any school nurse's positions or funding for the ?? school [Speaker Changes] Both of you spoke earlier this session about supporting more money for vouchers is that in the budget? [Speaker changes] There is an appropriation of approximately 800000 dollars that would potentially be available for children that exceed at the maximum amount which is 2500 for base funding which could provide for the second academic year some additional funding for those slots. [speaker changes] You mention in here that the average 3500 dollar per teacher raise does that correspond to 7% or what kind of percent does that correspond to and how do you structure that i know in that senate proposal early on it was weighted towards the early career of people and how do you structure this? [speaker changes] We'll have available for you the paid plan itself and those averages have been worked out by folks that do the math I have not done the math my self but 7% is the number they are telling us is what we have and the average is 3500 dollars. Basically we go from the 37 step plan that currently exists to a 6 step plan wit the beginning pay at 33000, 3300 a month and at 25 years were at 50000 dollars and there is six steps on the way over the 25 years. We will be able to get you the details. [speaker changes] That six step plan also lays the ground work for some good ideas coming out of the governor's recommendation along the program he had called career pathways were working on language and funding in order to get the going and encourage some of the local DLAA's to come back with recommendation on how we can get that program going as well. [speaker changes] We think that by setting the base and having the six step plan and setting it up so that over time that plan is funded on a recurring basis with pretty much flat dollars. It doesn't cost anymore year over year to keep that going based on what fiscal folks are telling us that we then have a platform to build on to do things such as the ?? supplements such as paying the teacher's additional amounts for teaching in ?? staff areas or ?? staff schools and some other ideas including the governor's career pathways ideas but those are things that will come in the next session and the next session but we think that what we are doing with the base pay have given ourselves and given the people of our state and the educators of the state the opportunity to do some special things as far as teaching pay is concerned in the future [speaker changes What's your plan to defend the married woman ?? ?? yesterday [speaker changes] You know I released a statement yesterday that 60 plus percent of the state wanted that provision put in our constitution I think that the attorney general should defend our states constitution until the supreme court has made a final decision i think we should continue to do that. We don't have any plans at this point to do anything but as you know there is a provision that will allow the legislative leaders to intervene. I hope that is not necessary if it is necessary we will consider it. [speaker changes] Do you think that 10 million dollars is enough to sustain an industry that has gotten 60 to 80 million dollars in recent years and second is there any chance for more movement on that or is the grand program on that a done deal? [speaker changes] I don't see us extending the current credit program I think the grant program is what we're working on there is a possibility that there maybe more than the 10 million dollars currently in there for the grant program remember what were talking about though is the current credit program doesn't end until December 31st

Lieu of $10,000,000 so little for giving us more places the coverage-year, is this four-for-all-star and co-wrote to go on then I think that all of our members recognize the positive impact of the film industry's avenue North Carolina valuable to us to go back and we continue work on tax reform and seven great-great impact on the Carolinas competitiveness with an attribute of a lot of job creation to them or more were there that we come back and figure out a way that weekend could play something that will attract them to the two is 27 is to be practically got as many opportunities in the film industry as this week as we possibly can I think if you go back if you remember back to the fairly well in the majority of the film tax credit was always a political football the democratic leadership, from five until actually the S.F. a Johnny come back in 20001020001 and say that (SPEAKER CHANGES) sells us and we got something that we can figure out why your members comfortable with them to make it clear that the citizens of North Carolina for getting enough benefit for the NATO summit as the session for next year , Campbell, and we're all in the session sources to walk so probably go with me for more? Ran as a place on Monday, the stages of having that he has another example of things that could go to start acts that this is one of the scenarios whether there is this of them return on investment well documented return on investment is inconsistent offense was a tax reform and I get a good center rich and the vote was in my response right now than I am center Roller represent about whether the remarkable job of keeping as for the five schools and tax reform so we don't do anything that research are the leading contender from the base for the right -clicking them back to this sort of five fact that then find ways to potentially structure that nothing is open the sexual a structure that has a part of a grant program I'm optimistic we can get something that makes sense to-the-top, staff scientist yes vote as if that bill law passes of $20,000,000 sought in the budget for the college of hotel, four companies, the only reason to sell its workstations at the very foundations of his office as you want some in a long week we had those there was no winner home Sunday evening, when over the film, via the outline of full of weird Fillmore film ever conducted from the solution also express, some concerns of some plays all we went back and we've fallen off in the soul final offers an address, Congress is concerned,(SPEAKER CHANGES) if nothing of that number is still the only has a very positive overall package of four for teachers, forcing employees for people of North Carolina and all we are, we were optimistic that the governor will want to see them as well as at the end of the governors to and from highway should be doing is always concern to make sure the weekend, the operations of the state's I think some of the concern was if we got to 7% of the good thing could lead to 5:00 PM Anselmo the mechanics are in place at the datalink and five acres of death was a bug me go back to the route list reserve for Medicare savings reserve from four different from that era for repair and renovation safely within the weakest recovers more than five feet long , a senior defense is preserved future system as a defense has any major not changing the dollar amount the same year planning for future systems were not changing the dollar amount the fourth of that the dollars for the only flaw has a duty are aware of some of funding for the fairness of the positions more on that comes from the water is only also converted from all of those features system dollars PM to classroom teacher dollars, because of the song was so $65,000,000 of India’s homes for the use of four feature positions of sole producer Phil Goldman at $65,000,000 and David $65,000,000 to a future funding, so if the guy in the same dollars of the sake of money is available we just have to go for the knowledgeable devolution was a 65,000,001 that's exactly why the city to spend more for humans doesn't think they're wary rather than the reality of says $65,000,000 should ??...............

The local school districts determined that they need to move it back into TA allotment. They have the full flexibility to do that. This is really doing a better job of accounting for how that money is being spent. Right now we know that the school systems have determined that they want to use that TA money, pull it, and hire teachers to the amount of 65 million dollars. Next year they have flexibility, if they choose, from K through 3, to move all that back into teacher assistance. We provided that flexibility so that's critically important because some could say that we've got 65 million in teacher assistance. We haven't done that, all we've done is acknowledge how the school system's are currently using that money and they still continue to have the flexibility to use it in the way they they see fit. Thank you all. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you.