North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue is vetoing legislation that would keep unemployment benefits flowing for about 37,000 long-term jobless workers but also force her to accept a double-digit budget cut.
Perdue's office said Saturday she will veto the bill. House members met hours earlier to force her into a choice on the same day authorization for the jobless benefits runs out. Legislation extending the federally funded benefits for workers out of work for up to 99 weeks included language forcing the Democratic governor to also accept a 13 percent cut as a starting point for negotiations over the next budget year.
Republican legislative leaders said they were ensuring schools and state agencies can count on funding if negotiations drag into the new budget year starting in July.
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