By Matthew Burns and Laura Leslie
Raleigh, N.C. — State lawmakers have negotiated a $23 billion spending plan for 2017-18 that includes raises for teachers and state employees, a cost-of-living adjustment for retirees and tax cuts for individuals and businesses.
Details of the proposed budget won’t be available until late Monday or Tuesday morning, but House and Senate leaders said they expect to approve it by the end of the week. The new fiscal year starts July 1.
The compromise, which has been negotiated behind closed doors over the past two weeks, spends slightly more than the $22.9 billion plans passed by the House and the Senate over the past month.
Following are some of the highlights:
A 3.3 percent average raise for teachers, and a 9.6 percent average raise over the next two years. Meanwhile, principals and assistant principals would see their salaries go up by 8.6 and 13.4 percent, respectively, over two years.A $1,000 raise for all other state employeesA permanent 1 percent cost-of-living adjustment for state retireesAdds $363 million to the state’s “rainy day” reserve fund, bringing the total to nearly $1.84 billion, which tops the statutory requirement of having 8 percent of annual spending in reservePersonal income tax rates would drop from 5.499 percent to 5.25 percent in 2019Corporate income tax rates would go from 3 percent to 2.5 percent in 2019The standard deduction, the amount on which people pay no income tax, would go from $16,500 to $20,000 for married couples filing jointly and from $8,250 to $10,000 for individuals in 2019.