GOP lawmakers tout local benefits of compromise budget plan

GOP lawmakers tout local benefits of compromise budget plan
Final votes are expected Thursday in the state House and Senate on the nearly $24 billion compromise budget plan. (Source: Corey Schmidt)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WECT) - Republican lawmakers from southeastern North Carolina are touting the benefits of the compromise budget plan that passed second reading in the state House and Senate.

The nearly $24 billion dollar budget does not include any recommendations from Governor Roy Cooper on his priority issue of expanding Medicaid. Three Democrats joined Republicans in the House to support the plan, and four senators voted for it in the Senate.

“This is a really good budget for the people of New Hanover County,” Rep. Ted Davis, (R-New Hanover) said in an email statement.. “It includes key resources that I fought for to support our public schools, UNCW, Fort Fisher Historic Site, Fort Fisher Aquarium and State Search and Rescue. This is in addition to the overall budget that raises teachers’ salaries, funds hurricane recovery and invests in school construction.”

According to Rep. Davis’ email, key provisions for New Hanover County include:

  • • $16,843,283 for school construction at New Hanover County Schools
  • • $9,986,372 for capital needs at Cape Fear Community College
  • • $8,000,000 for UNCW Dobo Hall Renovations
  • • $8,000,000 for Fort Fisher Historic Site Visitor Center
  • • $5,000,000 for Fort Fisher Aquarium
  • • $3,250,000 for Southeast Area Technical High School - New Hanover County Schools
  • • $1,000,000 for City of Wilmington Disaster Hardening Project
  • • $3,000,000 for State Search and Rescue
  • • $31,000,000 in recurring film grant
  • • $75,000 Mount Calvary University Leadership and Development
  • • New Hanover County grant for addiction treatment in jails

Rep. Brenden Jones (R-Columbus) and Sen. Danny E. Britt, Jr. (R-Robeson) sent a similar email news release, highlighting aspects of the compromise budget that they say will benefit their districts of Columbus and Robeson counties.

“This is truly a great budget and the local appropriations are substantial for our district, said Rep. Jones and Sen. Britt. “Working collaboratively throughout the last few months, we have been able to secure much needed funding that will have a lasting impact in our district for years to come.”

According to Rep. Jones and Sen. Britt, some of the funding allocated for Columbus and Robeson counties include:

Columbus County:

  • • $10,000 to Columbus County Senior Centers for purchase of a new van to be shared by the 7 Columbus County senior centers.
  • • $2,000,000 to Columbus County for assistance with renovation and repair of courthouse.
  • • $15,000 to Columbus County for emergency management
  • • $335,000 to the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office
  • • $20,000 to the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office to purchase all-terrain vehicles
  • • $500,000 in nonrecurring funds for the 2019-2020 fiscal year shall be allocated to Southeastern Regional Medical Center (Southeastern), to develop and administer a telehealth pilot program.
  • • $100,000 directed grant to the Town of Tabor City.
  • • $100,000 to the Town of Chadbourn for a directed grant for downtown renovation and demolition projects.
  • • $50,000 to the Town of Cerro Gordo for town hall projects.
  • • $25,000 to the Town of Cerro Gordo for town hall repurposing
  • • $6,000,000 to the Town of Fair Bluff for a directed grant for various disaster recovery projects.
  • • $50,000 to the Town of Whiteville for a directed grant to the Community CPR organization for programmatic support.
  • • $25,000 to the Acme-Delco-Riegelwood Fire-Rescue, Inc. for the purchase of a generator.
  • • $10,632,523 allocated pursuant to this subsection shall be used for the purpose of issuing allotted proceeds to Columbus County for capital improvement projects at local school administrative units for new construction or rehabilitation of existing facilities.
  • • $5,000 to the Buckhead Vol. Fire & Rescue for the purchase of saws needed for various rescues.
  • • $10,000 to the Columbus Career & College Academy for technology, textbooks & classroom supplies.
  • • $10,000 to the White Marsh-Welches Creek Community VFD to cover their portion of the Air Packs federal grant (AFG).

Robeson County:

  • • $100,000 to Town of St. Pauls for water and wastewater infrastructure projects
  • • $20,000 to Town of St. Pauls for a generator.
  • • $1,000,000 to the Town of Pembroke for water and wastewater infrastructure projects.
  • • $1,000,000 to UNC Pembroke for funds to support program development and operating budgets for an expanded nursing program and additional programs related to occupational and physical therapy.
  • • $5,000 to the Colors of Life, which works on gang prevention initiatives in South Lumberton.
  • • $125,000 to the City of Lumberton for floodgate advanced planning.
  • • $15,000 to the City of Lumberton for the purchase of a swift water boat for rescues.
  • • $125,000 to Pembroke Rescue Squad, Inc. for a directed fire and rescue grant.
  • • $10,000 to Raynham-McDonald Volunteer Fire Department for the purchase of equipment.
  • • $10,000 to Stop the Violence, a non-profit organization focused on lessening violence in the Fairmont community.
  • • $180,000 to the Town of Rowland for downtown revitalization projects.
  • • $25,000 to Saddletree Volunteer Fire Department, Inc. for a directed fire and rescue grant.
  • • $10,000 to the Robeson Co. Career Center to purchase shop equipment.
  • • $10,000 to the Burnt Swamp Fire Department for ten sets of turnout gear.
  • • $5,000 to the Lumber River Senior Games COG for programs and activities for Senior Games.
  • • $10,000 to the Lumbee Tribe Heritage Group for programs and activities for Lumbee Elders
  • • $20,000 to the Robeson Co. Sheriff Dept. to purchase ATV’s.
  • • $5,000 to the Robeson Co. Humane Society to purchase cameras & security system
  • • $75,000 to the Robeson Co. Sheriff’s Dept.
  • • $100,000 for the Lumberton River Walk

Final votes are expected Thursday on the compromise budget plan. Governor Cooper is likely to veto the bill, and Democrats in the state House and Senate can preserve the veto if they stay united.

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