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Senate Tax Reform Takes A Turn

The North Carolina Legislative Building
Dave Crosby

Rucho resigned his co-chairmanship of the finance committee in protest of Berger's plan, which passed the Senate Thursday.

Regardless of what ultimately passes, Jessica Jones, WUNC Capitol Bureau Chief, said on the State of Things that the implications could be far reaching.

"Politically, I think it's going to be very interesting what happens in the next year or two," she said. 

Meanwhile, the House approved their budget, which opponents say, shortchanges education. Alexandra Sirota, director of the budget and tax center at the NC Justice Center, said it's a bad idea to cut taxes while not fully funding our education priorities.

"The cost of delivering education is growing," she said. "Our investments are not keeping pace with that."

Brent Lane, director of the Carolina Center for Competitive Economies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said education is a necessary priority, particularly when the tax plan could negatively impact the poor. However, he said that even when the state had a tax system meant to favor the poor over the rich, it didn't quite work that way.

"Even when it was progressive, the result for our citizens in income was regressive," he said.

Alex Granados joined The State of Things in July 2010. He got his start in radio as an intern for the show in 2005 and loved it so much that after trying his hand as a government reporter, reader liaison, features, copy and editorial page editor at a small newspaper in Manassas, Virginia, he returned to WUNC. Born in Baltimore but raised in Morgantown, West Virginia, Alex moved to Raleigh in time to do third grade twice and adjust to public school after having spent years in the sheltered confines of a Christian elementary education. Alex received a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also has a minor in philosophy, which basically means that he used to think he was really smart but realized he wasn’t in time to switch majors. Fishing, reading science fiction, watching crazy movies, writing bad short stories, and shooting pool are some of his favorite things to do. Alex still doesn’t know what he wants to be when he grows up, but he is holding out for astronaut.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.