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Budgets in AL, NC, NH Emerge After Extended Negotiations

September 24, 2015

While most state legislative sessions ended over the summer, a number of states only recently approved spending for FY16. Governors in Alabama, North Carolina and New Hampshire have approved budgets in the past few weeks, each after months of tense negotiations. SSTI reviews budgets in each of these states for spending related to technology-based economic development. For past articles in this series, visit ssti.org/tags/state-budget.

Last week, Gov. Robert Bentley signed Alabama FY 2016 General Fund Appropriations bill (HB1, Second Special Session 2015) following a second special session of the legislature. Funding for many state agencies was reduced by 5.5 percent, and $80 million in use tax revenue from the state’s Education Trust Fund was moved to the General Fund.

The spending bill provides $1.75 billion, including $7.4 million for the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) and $5.2 million for the Department of Commerce. Of the Commerce Dept. funding, $75,000 is appropriated to support the state’s Robotics Technology Park.

North Carolina
Gov. Pat McCrory has signed a $21.7 billion budget bill (H97) for fiscal years 2016-2017, 11 weeks after the end of the regular legislative session.

The University of North Carolina System is slated to receive $2.7 billion in both FY16 and FY17, while the state’s community colleges system will receive $1.1 billion each fiscal year.

The North Carolina Department of Commerce is appropriated $57.5 million each year, with $20.7 million in state aid funds in FY16 and $18.1 million in FY17.

Over the biennium, $16 million is allocated for the One North Carolina Fund, which supports the recruitment and retention of companies in knowledge industries. About $57.8 million in FY16 and $71.7 million in FY17 will be appropriated for Job Development Investment Grants to offer sustained annual grants to businesses creating new jobs.

Proposed tax credits for solar and other renewable energy projects were omitted from the final legislation.

New Hampshire
Gov. Maggie Hassan encouraged Democratic legislators to override her June veto of an $11.3 billion budget bill (HB1-A) for fiscal years 2016-2017 after a compromise was reached with Republicans. Gov. Hassan had opposed a large reduction in business profits and enterprises taxes that was incorporated in the legislation. However, an agreement was reached this month to reduce the fiscal impact of those tax cuts by including triggers contingent upon certain revenue targets. A revised version of the tax changes was included in SB9, which amends the language in the budget bill, as well as funding previously negotiated raises for state employees. Gov. Hassan signed SB9 on September 16, leading to the override of her earlier veto.

The biennial budget includes $81 million each year for the University System of New Hampshire, and $42.5 million in FY16 and $43.7 million in FY17 for the state’s community college system.

Alabama, New Hampshire, North Carolinastate budget