North Carolina Republicans overcame a $2.5 billion shortfall to cut taxes, cut debt and balance the budget. The 2013-2015 budget fulfills promises lawmakers made to voters to control runaway spending, reduce taxes, and put North Carolina back on a path to economic prosperity. We’ve put our financial house in order and are now able to make critical investments on behalf of our state. Our budget fully funds state pension and health plans for state government employees and restores funding for 69 vacant state trooper positions to protect our communities. It sets aside $270 million to the rainy day fund to protect taxpayers long-term and implements a variety of cost savings and efficiency policies to safeguard taxpayer dollars.
North Carolina families deserve more of their hard earned money. Our tax reform plan is helping our economy by simplifying outdated laws and cutting tax rates across the board. Among all neighboring states, North Carolina now has the second lowest personal and corporate rates. As a result of these significant tax cuts, we are beating national employment trends for the first time in years and putting money back into our citizens’ pockets. North Carolina’s job friendly environment has jumped from 44th to 17th after more than $1 billion in tax cuts over the next few years.
While Washington continues to spend more and more money we don’t have, North Carolina has balanced our budget and cut taxes, lowering our state debt to 6th in the nation. Because of our reforms, North Carolina is now one of only 10 states with a AAA credit rating from all three national ratings agencies. And we’ve taken steps to pay down our debt to the federal government, reversing the tide of rising taxes on our job creators and proving long-term tax relief and certainty for North Carolina businesses.
We continue to focus on common sense legislation that eliminates and streamlines burdensome regulations for individuals and businesses alike. Regulatory Reform was a necessary step in creating an environment that accommodates our entrepreneurs and business owners rather than stifling them with red tape. State agencies must now determine the impact to businesses and study the costs to citizens and the state before establishing new regulations. Agencies will be required to regularly review regulations in order to have them remain in effect.