GOP-led NC Senate tries to strangle Cooper administration via budget cuts

The sheer scale of these irresponsible actions is breathtaking:

Meanwhile, the Department of Environmental Quality's operating budget is reduced by 6 percent in the proposed budget, with Chief Deputy Secretary John Nicholson, a retired Marine colonel among those whose jobs would be eliminated. The Division of Environmental Assistance and Customer Service, which works with businesses and communities with environmental regulations and permitting, boosting recycling, energy efficiency and cutting emissions, would be gutted, losing 46 positions in its Raleigh and regional offices.

The Office of Science Technology & Innovation in the Department of Commerce would be eliminated, and funding to the North Carolina Biotechnology Center would be cut by 5 percent. The budget for the Wildlife Resources Commission would be cut by 18 percent. The Department of Transportation would lose 400 positions, and another 183 positions that oversee picking up litter and roadside trash also would be eliminated.

In political analysis, it's not always easy to ferret out the "underlying" motives behind certain actions. A gut response would tell you Republican leaders are merely punishing Roy Cooper for both winning the election and taking an outspoken stance of opposition. I'm sure that's partly true, but I have a feeling these department cuts have another goal: To put the Governor and his senior staff into "crisis" mode, to make them scramble to repair the breeches in personnel and shuffle the workload, to keep them so busy just trying to perform the basic functions of government they won't have time to strategize about fighting the Constitutional overreach of the Legislative Branch. But (of course) it will also be the people of North Carolina who will suffer from this asinine and childish behavior.

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Comments

My brain hurts already...

I've been poring over the Senate's Budget for the last hour-and-a-half, and I know even less about it now than I did prior to that. But here's an interesting twist to the massive cuts to DOT staff:

Intent. – It is the intent of the General Assembly to take all steps necessary to assist the Department of Transportation in accelerating project delivery and reducing costs incurred by the State. The General Assembly finds that shifting more control over projects to each of the Highway Divisions can assist in achieving this intent. Further, the General Assembly encourages each
Highway Division to increase its outsourcing of preconstruction activities to private contractors to sixty percent (60%) of the total cost of preconstruction activities performed by the Highway Division, with the belief that increased outsourcing will also assist in achieving this intent. Therefore, in order to assess the results from shifting project control and increasing the use of outsourcing, and to determine what adjustments may be necessary to improve upon the results, the General Assembly finds that reports are necessary to collect baseline data to establish appropriate targets.

Bolding mine. The push for outsourcing at DOT is not new, but the cutting of 400 positions combined with this reporting demand tells me not enough bilking of public funds by GOP donors is actually happening, not to their desired levels, anyway.

There's money to be made, by God, and they will have it.

The GOP legislature is

The GOP legislature is attempting to usurp as much power as they possibly can from the other branches and local government. It is that simple. They have a plan.

I'm a moderate Democrat.

Right you are

They know the pendulum will eventually swing back. They're looking to push it as far as humanly possible toward dominance and greed.