Senate budget grows less than Cooper proposal

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina Senate Republicans want to grow the state government budget for the next fiscal year at about half the rate of what Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper proposed two months ago.

Senate leader Phil Berger and top budget-writers unveiled their spending proposal Tuesday through mid-2019. They say the plan would provide 2.5 percent more to spend next year than the current-year budget allows. Cooper proposed a 5.1 percent increase.

The GOP budget proposal controls the rate of growth in part by incorporating its previously announced plan to reduce further individual and corporate income tax rates.

Berger says the Senate is keeping to principles of avoiding temptations to spend all the revenues that enter the state's coffers annually.

The Senate proposal does include teacher, principal and state employee pay raises and another $150 million to address Hurricane Matthew recovery.

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