North Carolina legislature conferees earlier this week unveiled their $23 billion budget agreement for the 2017-18 fiscal year, which included pro-growth tax relief and responsible spending levels that will help grow the economy. The compromise budget also included significant cuts to wasteful corporate welfare programs, and long-overdue “raise the age” reforms which give the juvenile criminal justice system jurisdiction over sixteen- and seventeen-year-olds.
Young North Carolinians deserve a responsible budget that promotes individual opportunity and success and sets clear priorities and spending limits. The compromise budget reduces burdens on taxpayers, reduces wasteful spending and invests in meaningful criminal justice reform, making North Carolina a more prosperous place for young people to live.
Below is a breakdown of key items in the 2017-2018 fiscal year budget from Generation Opportunity Spokeswoman Anna Beavon Gravely:
Taxes and Spending
- Spending Levels: The combined growth of inflation and population for North Carolina is 3.8% this year. This budget agreement increases government spending by 3%. Governor Cooper’s budget proposal asked for a 5.1% increase, which would have spent $500 million more than the General Assembly’s budget agreement.
- Personal Tax Cuts: Reduces the tax burden on North Carolina families and small businesses by cutting the personal income tax rate from 5.499 to 5.25 percent in 2019, and by increasing the amount of income that is exempt from state income tax. These cuts and dramatic increases to the standard deduction will account for $2.83 billion in tax cuts over the next five years.
- Corporate Income Taxes: Lowers the corporate income tax rate from 3 percent to 2.5 percent in 2019. These cuts will account for $476.4 million in tax cuts over the next five years.
Criminal Justice Reform:
- Raise the Age: Begins the process to “raise the age” in North Carolina, ensuring 16- and 17-year olds suspected of misdemeanor offenses and less serious felonies would be tried as juveniles instead of adults by December 2019, and establishes a Juvenile Jurisdiction Advisory Committee to develop specific plans for implementation.
The North Carolina legislature is expected to vote on the budget agreement later this week. Generation Opportunity is urging the legislature to pass this budget and send it to Governor Cooper for his signature.