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LEGISLATIVE NEWSLETTER February 11, 2014 ITS WORKING, NORTH CAROLINA!

Im excited to give you great news for my first newsletter in 2014. Data recently released by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics prove that our conservative policies of lowering taxes, cutting wasteful government spending, reforming unemployment insurance, and reducing regulations are working! In 2011, when Republicans took control of the legislature for the first time since Reconstruction, our unemployment rate was one of the highest rates in the nation at 10.4%. North Carolinians were hurting as they searched for nonexistent jobs. The December unemployment data released in late January shows that North Carolinas unemployment rate has fallen 3.5% in three years to 6.9%. This marks the first time since September 2008 that our states unemployment rate has fallen below 7%. Since January 2011, North Carolinas economy has added over 167,000 jobs! Those opposed to our policies will continue to spin these numbers in a way that would make it appear as if our efforts had nothing to do with this good news. Im sure this year, an election year, youll hear liberals say that the new jobs are simply a reflection of the increased population or that workers have left the workforce. The fact of the matter is the rate has declined and jobs have been added despite the new population numbers. On top of that, people and businesses are moving to North Carolina due to our high quality, yet low cost of living with our new lower and competitive tax rates.

SENATOR NEAL HUNT


Proudly Representing Wake County in the North Carolina Senate 15 District
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LEGISLATIVE OFFICE 300 N. Salisbury Street, Room 309 Raleigh, NC 27603 (919)733-5850 Neal.Hunt@ncleg.net

DISTRICT OFFICE 2600 Fairview Road Raleigh, NC 27608 (919)781-3464

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info@nealhunt.com

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9 STANDING COMMITTEES 8 Appropriations, Co-Chair Commerce Finance 7 Health Care Program Evaluation 6 Redistricting Transportation 5 NC VA SC TN GA US INTERIM COMMITTEES Economic Development and Global Engagement Oversight Commission on Governmental Operations

Regional unemployment rate data from January 2012 to January 2014

UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE REFORM Liberal politicians claim that we have destroyed our states unemployment benefits, yet they fail to take responsibility for their own misguided actions. Earlier in January, Senator Hagan called our unemployment insurance reform irresponsible and cold hearted. Heres the truth: While serving in the NC General Assembly (1999 2009) as a Senate Appropriations Chairwoman, Senator Kay Hagan was among those who made irresponsible decisions that damaged the solvency of our states unemployment insurance system. When the recession hit, the state was completely unprepared to pay the flood of new unemployment claims. As a result, North Carolina was forced to borrow more than $2 billion from the federal government. In fact, our state had the 4 th highest unemployment insurance debt in the country behind only California, Pennsylvania, and New York. House Bill 4, which Governor McCrory signed into law in 2013, included a prudent plan to pay off the debt by 2016. If we had failed to reform our unemployment insurance this year, the

Commission on Jordan Lake Program Evaluation Oversight Transportation Oversight

VOTING RECORD

BILLS INTRODUCED

states debt would not have been paid off until 2019. By that time, North Carolina employers would pay a federal tax of $718.2 million per year, when the standard is $79.8 million per year. This obviously would have threatened existing jobs and made it harder to create and recruit new jobs. To sum, the left has clearly lost this debate and continues to blame everyone else for the mess they made. Their policies of high taxes and overspending drove our state onto the highway to economic stagnation and among the highest unemployment rate in the country. TEACHER SALARY INCREASE PLAN The greatest investment we can make for preparing our kids for the future is to provide high-quality teachers in every classroom in the state. We are committed to making North Carolina nationally competitive in hiring qualified and professional teachers. In our first term as the majority party, we recognized our teachers by giving teachers their first raise in five years in 2012, but more does need to be done. This week, state Republican leaders unveiled a new plan to improve teacher compensation. The new plan will increase starting teacher pay by $2,200 this year and by an additional $2,000 the following year. Funding for the proposed raises will come from additional and available revenues and will not require a tax increase. North Carolinas starting teacher pay has historically been noncompetitive. Under this new plan, teachers just beginning their careers will receive more than a 13 percent raise over the next two years, with starting salaries moving from the current base rate of $30,800 to $35,000. These numbers do not include other sources for teacher compensation, including local supplements. In addition, we have announced plans to extend supplemental pay for teachers with Masters degrees to those who have completed coursework in a graduate program as of July 1, 2013. We also will retain the merit pay contracts we passed last year for the best teachers to receive salary supplements as opposed to salary increases based solely on tenure. NAACPS HYPOCRITICAL ACTIONS An Elon University poll found that 72 percent of North Carolinians support requiring voters to provide some form of photo identification before casting their ballot. l agreed and passed common-sense

legislation that requires voters to show a photo ID to vote. Although this bill passed both chambers with bipartisan and popular support, the North Carolina chapter of the NAACP has made every effort possible to spread mistruths about voter ID, claiming that voter ID will suppress minority voters. The truth is: states like Georgia who have passed voter ID laws have actually seen higher voter turnouts. In addition, eligible voters without photo identification will receive one at no cost. This past weekend, the NAACP held a Mass Moral March, much like their Moral Monday protests, to criticize the efforts we have made to reform our state. As predicted, one of the efforts most criticized was our voter ID law. Interestingly enough, the NAACP required their marchers to maintain a valid photo ID throughout the march (see below).

Instructions given to the protestors at the NAACPs march on Saturday, February th 8 in downtown Raleigh.

It is extremely hypocritical that Rev. Barber and the NAACP would require a photo ID in order to march in a protest criticizing Republican policies, yet simultaneously claim that requiring photo ID to pick our nations leaders is a form of suppression. Not only is it hypocritical, but it demonstrates that the sole purpose of the NAACPs actions is to simply oppose whatever policies Republicans support. BIGGER PAYCHECKS Im sure that many of you have opened your paychecks recently and realized that youre taking home a little more this year than last year. Thats because we passed an historic tax reform plan that

lowered taxes for all North Carolinians. The left will continue to say that we have somehow raised taxes on the lower and middle classes. I urge you to look at the paychecks youve received so far in 2014 and see how much less the state is taking from your paycheck. The fact is, all income levels are benefiting from these tax cuts! As always, it is a pleasure to serve you in the North Carolina Senate. If you ever need any assistance, my office is more than willing to offer support. Sincerely,

Neal Hunt

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