As far back as ten months ago, I wrote about North Carolina’s mounting debt burden for the billions it borrowed from the Federal government to cover unemployment benefits. Indeed, six months ago state lawmakers passed legislation to study the issue. Apparently, a $2.5 billion debt that the state is now beginning to pay interest on is not something our elected officials and bureaucrats in Raleigh feel warrants much urgency. According to this AP article:
Six months later, the study hasn’t begun. The state Department of Commerce hadn’t hired an outside consultant as of last week to perform the analysis and make recommendations to fix the fund that pays claims, as the law requires.
While there’s no deadline to complete the study, the law ordering the study said reforms “must be developed and implemented as soon as practicable.”
This issue is something we’ve known about for quite some time, but yet the state’s response is to continue to sit on its hands and wish it away. And what exactly requires paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to a “consultant” to “perform an analysis” anyway?
I’ll save the state the time and the money. If you are to repay this loan, you can either a)raise taxes, b)cut spending by reducing unemployment benefits or elsewhere in the state budget, or c) some combination of a and b.
Now get to work.