PRESS RELEASE North Carolina General Assembly
Senator Harry Brown
July 5, 2019
Gov. Cooper’s Veto of Budget Threatens to Cancel Raises for State Employees Cooper cites lack of Medicaid expansion, which would provide health care to mostly able-bodied adults, as one of his main reasons for vetoing budget Without legislative override state employees will miss out on their largest raise in over a decade
Raleigh, N.C. – Last week, Gov. Cooper vetoed the state budget passed by the General Assembly because it did not expand Medicaid, but unless the General Assembly is able to override the veto, his decision to prioritize health care for able-bodied adults will cancel the largest pay increase for state employees in more than a decade. The legislative budget prioritizes state agency employee pay raises after years of treating them differently than teachers. Over the last five years, state agency employees have received a 7.6-percentage point pay increase compared to a 20-percentage point increase for teachers. This budget provides most state employees with a 5% salary increase by adding $220 million over the biennium. It is the largest salary increase for state employees in more than a decade. “State employees are some of the hardest working folks that we have in this state, and the budget passed by the General Assembly provides them a much needed and well deserved raise,” said Senator Harry Brown (R-Onslow). “Governor Cooper is playing a political game with the lives of thousands of state employees because he disagrees with us on one policy issue and that’s not right.” The General Assembly’s budget also provides additional raises and supplements to state employees that put their lives on the line every day working in dangerous environments. Prison employees that work in facilities with the highest vacancy rates will receive an annual salary supplement of at least $7,500. State Bureau of Investigation and Alcohol Law Enforcement officers will also receive an additional raise by having their salaries tied to the same salary schedule as highway patrol officers. 

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