Raleigh, N.C. – This morning, Governor Roy Cooper sent a letter to teachers blaming his decision to veto their pay raises on Republicans. Below is a statement from Senator Deanna Ballard (R-Watauga) about this latest stunt:
"My momma taught me: 'Watch what a man does, and not necessarily what he says.' Three times over the past three years Republicans have sent teacher pay raises to the Governor – three times he vetoed them. Gov. Cooper speaks of respecting teachers, but blocking much needed raises doesn’t demonstrate much gratitude for their hard work."
- Republican offers on teacher pay included a 4.9% raise plus a $1,000 bonus -- but Governor Cooper and Senate Democrats rejected it because of the Governor's Medicaid-or-nothing ultimatum.
- The Governor claims to want to negotiate teacher pay separate from anything else, but that's mathematically impossible. Teacher pay is a $5 billion section of the budget, and even small adjustments have nine-figure budget impacts.
- Senator Berger told Governor Cooper months ago that he would negotiate the entire budget, including teacher pay. But Governor Cooper declined, saying that Medicaid expansion must be part of any budget agreement.
- Because the Governor will never sign a budget without Medicaid expansion, the only way for teachers to get a pay raise is for Senate Democrats to override Governor Cooper's veto.
- Governor Cooper has vetoed every teacher pay raise that has come across his desk.
- Republicans have provided teachers with the third-highest pay raise in the entire country over the last five years.