The North Carolina General Assembly has given tentative approval to a final budget from Democrats they say preserves education jobs and prepares more cuts if extra Medicaid money doesn't come from Congress.
The Senate gave its tentative approval Tuesday to the $19 billion spending plan by a vote of 31-16, followed by a 66-49 vote in the House. The two chambers must approve the bill again on Wednesday before it heads to Gov. Beverly Perdue's desk.
Democrats say they've eliminated an $800 million budget gap, not including $519 million if the Medicaid funds don't get approved.
Senate Minority Leader Phil Berger said he voted no because the bill doesn't prepare the state enough for a $3 billion shortfall next year.