NC Budget extended until Sept. 18

budgetRALEIGH – Lawmakers said they’re working on a compromise after extending their budget deadline another three weeks. The House and Senate passed a Continuing Resolution this week to ensure funding for the current operations of state government until September 18th, 2015 at 11:59 PM.

While the current budget does not have funding for the state to continue paying for driver’s education courses, that key sticking point is being reconsidered in a valiant effort to finalize a budget. Funding for the class have been dwindling since 2012. Last year it was $25 million.

Some senate lawmakers have been critical of the program believing driver’s ed may be a waste of taxpayer dollars. Their argument is that a high percentage of students fail the drivers license test at least once.
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Another point under negotiation is whether the state will continue paying for teacher assistants. Isothermal Community College has already terminated some of their part time positions and is taking a critical look at enrollment figures. Some teacher assistant positions are still not filled in Rutherford County Schools.

There is another cost to consider as well. The cost to these three budget negotiation extensions, $2.1 million. That’s the cost of these extra seven weeks of the legislative session according to the state. How many teacher assistants could that have funded?