$1 BILLION Dollars Short. Thank you NC Republicans....errr, I mean NC Democrats

I signed up some time ago for the Action for Children North Carolina email list, and it has been a nice addition. The group sends our semi-regular emails about the latest topics that will affect the Health and Safety of North Carolina's Children. That is where I read about this story from the Greensboro News & Record. It is interesting not only because of the content, but because of the ONE "opinion-maker" they sampled.

$1 billion shortfall projected

By Mark Binker, Staff Writer

...the projected shortfall is not a surprise. Legislators knew when they passed last year’s budget that they would wind up with what is known as a "structural deficit" this year.

That’s because budget writers paid for increases in expenses that come due every year — state worker and teacher salaries, for example — with money that was a one-time windfall. The state can’t count on that same windfall this year.

"I think that’s a little disturbing on its face," said Chris Fitzsimon of N.C. Policy Watch, a liberal-leaning think tank that follows the state budget closely. Building in such a shortfall, he said, could put public programs such as mental health reform or child care subsidies in the way of the
budget ax only a year after they got a boost from the state.

Well, what do you expect when the lousy Republican-controlled Democratic-controlled legislature passes tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations while maintaining one of the lowest cigarette taxes in the country. Cigarette smoking costs our economy each time someone gets cancer or emphasema and can't afford health insurance. We all pay for it, but we don't get anything usefull in return.

I'll say it again, when Virginia Foxx votes to cut taxes for the wealthy and corporations, while also voting to cut Medicaid, it is an abomination.

"This budget says the lives of poor mothers and poor children are not that important after all," said Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass. "Under this budget, tax breaks for the rich are more important than life itself."

When our own Senator Eleanor Kinnaird does it, not a peep.

NC SENATE CUTS PAY FOR TAX BREAKS TO CORPORATIONS, PEOPLE MAKING $800,000 A YEAR (Word File): The exciting thing about cutting health care for the blind and children is that it frees up money to do things normally you only think those disconnected politicians in Washington could dream up. Here the NC Senate is able to use the money to reduce NC’s corporate income tax rate (even though some profitable corporations like BB+T bank already pay little or nothing in state taxes on their profits.) The NC Senate was also able to reduce the income tax rate for people making an average income of $800,000 a year. Those cuts cost regular taxpayers about $60 million a year.

We need to start holding our legislators responsible for votes that do not agree with the Progressive agenda. We get a feel-good year of social benefits and tax cuts knowing that in the next year we will have less income and probably have to either raise taxes or slash programs...again.

North Carolina ranks 11th in Infant Mortality, and that isn't 11th in a good way. If we were a country, and we have as large a population as many countries, we would rank below all these other countries:

	Cayman Islands 	8.00 	2006 est.
	Virgin Islands 	7.86 	2006 est.
	Estonia 	7.73 	2006 est.
	Reunion 	7.63 	2006 est.
	New Caledonia 	7.57 	2006 est.
	Saint Pierre and Miquelon 	7.38 	2006 est.
	Slovakia 	7.26 	2006 est.
	Poland 	7.22 	2006 est.
	Montserrat 	7.19 	2006 est.
	Cyprus 	7.04 	2006 est.
	Northern Mariana Islands 	6.98 	2006 est.
	Martinique 	6.95 	2006 est.
	Israel 	6.89 	2006 est.
	Guam 	6.81 	2006 est.
	Lithuania 	6.78 	2006 est.
	Croatia 	6.72 	2006 est.
	United States 	6.43 	2006 est.
	Taiwan 	6.29 	2006 est.
	Cuba 	6.22 	2006 est.
	Korea, South 	6.16 	2006 est.
	Faroe Islands 	6.12 	2006 est.
	Italy 	5.83 	2006 est.
	Isle of Man 	5.82 	2006 est.
	Aruba 	5.79 	2006 est.
	New Zealand 	5.76 	2006 est.
	San Marino 	5.63 	2006 est.
	Greece 	5.43 	2006 est.
	Monaco 	5.35 	2006 est.
	Ireland 	5.31 	2006 est.
	Jersey 	5.16 	2006 est.
	European Union 	5.10 	2006 est.
	United Kingdom 	5.08 	2006 est.
	Gibraltar 	5.06 	2006 est.
	Portugal 	4.98 	2006 est.
	Netherlands 	4.96 	2006 est.
	Luxembourg 	4.74 	2006 est.
	Canada 	4.69 	2006 est.
	Guernsey 	4.65 	2006 est.
	Liechtenstein 	4.64 	2006 est.
	Australia 	4.63 	2006 est.
	Belgium 	4.62 	2006 est.
	Austria 	4.60 	2006 est.
	Denmark 	4.51 	2006 est.
	Slovenia 	4.40 	2006 est.
	Spain 	4.37 	2006 est.
	Macau 	4.35 	2006 est.
	Switzerland 	4.34 	2006 est.
	France 	4.21 	2006 est.
	Germany 	4.12 	2006 est.
	Andorra 	4.04 	2006 est.
	Czech Republic 	3.89 	2006 est.
	Malta 	3.86 	2006 est.
	Norway 	3.67 	2006 est.
	Finland 	3.55 	2006 est.
	Iceland 	3.29 	2006 est.
	Japan 	3.24 	2006 est.
	Hong Kong 	2.95 	2006 est.
	Sweden 	2.76 	2006 est.
	Singapore 	2.29 	2006 est.

Yeah, what we need are more tax cuts and less health care. That way we can drop even further behind Malta, Korea, Cuba, Taiwan, Lithuania, and Estonia. We're a joke people, we can't even keep our own damn kids alive, yet we act as if we have some moral authority with which to speak to the rest of the world. Hell, Singapore canes people, remember? But, they keep 6 more kids alive out of each 1000 born that we do. I'll bet the 738 families that lost a child in North Carolina because we are not as good as Singapore don't think we have a "Cadillac" Health Care system. But, we can't talk about that. It's too sad. It's to sad to admit that the North Carolina legislature did NOTHING to prevent an extra 738 infant deaths last year, but rather sat on their hands. We've seen abortion rates drop from 17.8% to 15% (after a low under Clinton policies of 14.3%) because of activism to make abortion "legal, but rare." Yet, we hear nary a gripe from these groups about the extra infants that die from a lousy health care system.

I think we should all vow to hold every legislator accountable for lousy votes this year. I don't care if they vote along the party line, I'm talking about votes like the "Cut Medicaid and Taxes" vote. Let's shout it out loud and clear that we will not sit idly by and allow them to make our state LESS safe for infants and children and moms and dads and grandmas and grandpas.

As always, work with NC Defend Healthcare to fight for Health Care for All in North Carolina; and, to help us build a new website if nothing else : )


I'm most proud...

that I figured out how to do a scroll box.

I'm least proud, that NC is so awful in health care.

CountryCrats - my thoughts, my blog.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Discouraging post, Robert

Nice format, though!

What's really scary is, just think how bad this would be if the GOP was in charge. They would be shooting for #1. And not in a good way. I imagine Mississippi would be hard to beat, but they would try.

What is the impact of NC forcing the counties to fund a portion of the Medicaid costs? I think I read that no other state shifts these costs over to counties. I know for a county like Durham, that is a huge expense. But how does it impact care?

You are right that we need to hold our Democratic reps responsible for their votes on this.

Can we see the menu?

The Legislature won't give Counties the authority to use multiple income streams to meet needs yet saddles them with responsibilities and limited reimbursement while cutting income taxes and shifting the burdens to property taxes and local sales tax.

The Legislature needs to give local governments authority to select from a menu of funding options in order to meet local needs and those services abandoned by the state at the doorway of local government.

Thanks Homebuilder Lobby!

We have the homebuilders/realtors to thank for breaking our counties' backs. With such a popular idea all over the state as making growth help pay for growth(impact or transfer dees), it's still amazing how well the builder money works.

I'd like to see the Progressives...

fight for abolishing the Local bills control by the legislature. They could sell it as:
1. It wastes time. Republicans say they want a shorter session.
2. It centralizes government. Republicans say they want to do away with the dept. of education because they believe in local control, but they don't think Mebane can control their own government?
3. It wastes money. It might not be much, but all of these bills must go through the process, which must use paper if nothing else.
4. Anything else?

CountryCrats - my thoughts, my blog.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Hold 'em accountable

We're responsible for improving the party with which we've cast our lot. The Democrats need lots of improving, and some reminders about fiscal sanity, shared responsibility, the common good would be good places to start.

Don't make us run primary opponents against you, House Dems. We're a demanding bunch, we internet progressives. You won't always like us. But if we like you, then we'll work our asses off to see to it you're elected. If we don't like you, then we'll work our asses off to find someone who would do a better job.

Start naming names, Robert. Let's start a revolution.

Scrutiny Hooligans - http://www.scrutinyhooligans.us


Someone's been drinking too much at the Scroll Bar. Check out this screen shot:

I can't figure it out as it looked fine earlier. Something is a little off with the table tags I think.


I took the liberty of changing it temporarily back to the AM view. [[Box] in a Box]

I changed

Because IE and not Firefox uses x/y

the cigarette tax

Each year at my precinct meeting (18-04) commissioner of insurance Jim Longs wife brings in a resolution to add 75 cents to the cigarette tax so that it can be brought up at the county, district and state conventions, each year it gets shot down further up the line.

That is a crying shame.

We need to push that through