RALEIGH, NC (AP) - North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley says speeding up the start of more than $700 million in government building projects will also speed up the creation of more than 25,000 new jobs.
Easley led support for starting the projects a few months early during a Tuesday meeting of the Council of State. The panel voted in favor of the debt needed to pay for the package, which Easley said will stimulate the state's economy.
Economists estimate that every $1 million spent on a project results in 36 new jobs, meaning these projects will produce nearly 26,000 new jobs. For each dollar spent on a construction project, $2.28 is pumped into North Carolina's economy.
The Council of State approved the following projects that will provide necessary classroom and laboratory space for university students, and ensure there is sufficient prison space to house criminals.
The projects total $744.15 million are:
Two Republican council members voted no. The council meeting was the last for Easley. Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue will be sworn in as governor on Saturday.