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Unhappy New Year

What does July 1st mean to you? Well, since it's the start of the new fiscal year for the government, and North Carolina has cut billions of dollars from the budget, it means you get less government services.

Yay!

Among the thousands of cuts to vital government services that you will not see directly because they are behind the scenes, there are a number of cuts that you will see, and feel, directly.

The N&O has a whole article about it today.  Highlights include:

  • The state Capitol will now be closed on Sundays.
  • The State Archives and State Library Building is cutting its Saturday hours from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. (instead of 5 p.m.)
  • Visitor parking rates at the Downtown State Government Complex will double from $1 to $2. Lost tickets will now cost $16 instead of $8.
  • The N.C. Transportation Museum will begin charging $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and military, and $6 for children under 12. In the past, visitors paid only for rides which cost $5 or $6. The new rates will include the rides.
  • Thomas Wolfe House in Asheville will raise the price of a tour from $3 to $5 for an adult, and from $1 to $2 for a student.
  • The Museum of the Albemarle in Elizabeth City will be closed on Sundays.
  • The N. C. Zoo in Asheboro is raising the price of tickets by $2. Children will pay $8, adults will pay $12 and seniors and students will pay $10. A one-year membership increases by $10.

These, of course, are trivial cuts compared the drastic cuts we've seen in education, transportation, and social service funding.

But don't dispair, there is some good news - your sales tax will drop 1%!

Good thing - that extra 1% sales tax is predicted to cost the average North Carolinian $107 a year.  Whew!  That's totally worth firing hundreds of teachers, delaying critical infrastructure repair, and giving huge tax breaks to corporations.

We're sure that will create lots of jobs, too.  Oh... maybe not.