State Budget Meeting Cancelled Until Next Week

Another public meeting to keep trying to work out differences between the House and Senate on North Carolina's new budget has been scrapped.

House negotiators cancelled a joint meeting Friday morning after Senate counterparts said Thursday they wouldn't be attending.

Tensions rose again Thursday when the two sides released competing offers and Gov. Pat McCrory threatened to veto any plan that contained the Senate's proposal to raise teacher salaries on average by more than 11 percent. McCrory said such a plan would be too costly with cuts elsewhere in state government. McCrory likes the House plan for an average 6 percent raise.

The House announced another budget meeting for Monday afternoon.

Lawmakers had hoped to work out budget adjustments before the new fiscal year began July 1.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Gov. Pat McCrory says he'd veto any North Carolina budget plan on his desk that raises teacher pay dramatically like the Senate wants because it would mean huge cuts elsewhere to pay for it.

McCrory told The Associated Press in an interview Thursday he's not going to risk key government services and allow Medicaid reductions to accept the Senate's average 11 percent pay offer. The original Senate proposal cut funding for thousands of teacher assistants to pay for it.

The governor is siding with the latest House offer to raise teacher pay on average by 6 percent, up from 5 percent. He says 6 percent is about as far as he can go and feel comfortable.

The two chambers are negotiating budget adjustment for the year that started July 1.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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More trouble in North Carolina budget negotiations after senators left the room when the House brought in local school leaders to speak to bolster its position to preserve funds for teacher assistants.

House budget-writers called Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Superintendent Heath Morrison during a public negotiating session Wednesday morning. But chief Senate negotiator Harry Brown said the two chambers had not agreed to allow outside speakers, and he and other Senate Republicans walked out.

Senators returned later as the House's speakers concluded and presided over the joint Senate-House meeting.

The Senate proposal would eliminate funding for more than 7,000 assistants in second and third grades. The House keeps the funds. The Senate wants to spend unused teacher assistant money on higher teacher pay raises than the House offered.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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