WJTV News Channel 12 - Schools in limbo while state fights over budget

Schools in limbo while state fights over budget

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 House negotiators cancel yet another meeting to work out differences in the state's budget. Senate leaders told them last night they wouldn't show up 

Earlier this week, senators walked out of a meeting and on Thursday tensions rose when Governor Pat McCrory threatened to veto any plan that resembles that of the senate.

House Republicans say the senate's proposal would either cut thousands of educators' jobs or harm thousands of Medicaid recipients.

Friday is day 11 of the budget impasses. Lawmakers were supposed to strike a deal by July 1st. This has educators and local lawmakers feeling uncertain.

$120 million are at stake for Pitt County Schools. The school board says they are working off last year's budget which lawmakers expect to change drastically.

Lawmakers are making changes daily and the school board says they are unsure if teacher assistants will be eliminated, if the school board will have to pay for worker's comp benefits, bus tort claims and exactly how much teacher raises will be. 

This is creating all types of confusion because last year's budget didn't have any of this built into it.

Local leaders and citizens are voicing their frustrations. "The wild swing that we're seeing in terms of the salary projections from a 5% raise to an 11% raise, those are tremendous differences." Pitt County School Board Vice-Chair Marc Whichard said. 

Whichard is all for teachers getting raises, but he is unsure where the money will come from. Pitt County has about 70 teachers they fund with local tax dollars.
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