McCrory cites accomplishments in remarks to GOP faithful
GREENSBORO – Gov. Pat McCrory took to the podium at the North Carolina Republican Convention in order to speak about numerous issues within the state — from the issue of job creation, to the growth of our state population, and of course, to address the HB2 controversy.
As a candidate for re-election, he encouraged all attendees to work tirelessly on his behalf, in the face of millions of dollars that are being poured into North Carolina on behalf of Roy Cooper, his opponent for governor.
In so doing, he spoke about the financial condition of the state when he took office and what he has done since to improve the state’s performance in all of these areas.
McCrory dubbed his achievements as The Carolina Comeback.
When he took office in 2013, North Carolina had the fifth highest unemployment rate in the country at nearly 9 percent and was struggling to recover from the recession. But by thinking outside the box and implementing policies that unleashed the private sector, North Carolina has added over 275,000 new jobs and is among the top states for job-creation.
In fact, North Carolina has created this sixth most jobs in the nation since 2013, unemployment is lower in all 100 counties across the state, and North Carolina has been named the most competitive state in the country.
Has the fastest growing economy in the country with a Gross Domestic Product growing by 13.4 percent since 2013.
Is making a manufacturing comeback — number one for manufacturing employment in the southeast and has added over 20,000 manufacturing jobs since January 2013.
Attracted more new business facilities and expansion in 2014 than any other state.
Exported goods to international markets grew at a 7.4 percent increase in 2014, more than twice as fast as the national average of 2.8 percent.
Was ranked one of the most innovative states in the country in 2015, with more successful business startups per capita than most states.
Inherited a $2.5 billion unemployment insurance debt to the federal government, which was paid off ahead of schedule, saving employers hundreds of millions of dollars.
Officials have instituted and advocated an ‘all of the above’ energy policy for our state.
Has been ranked as one of the best states in which to do business in the country since McCrory took office.
In 2013, North Carolina had the worst business climate in the southeast and was among the highest income and corporate income tax rates in the region. This made us very uncompetitive with surrounding states against whom we needed to compete. Two jumpstart the economy, the new governor delivered $4.4 billion in tax relief — including one of the largest income tax cuts in state history, all intended to put more money back into the pockets of hard-working North Carolina families and job-creators, because he believed that the people know how to spend their money best, not government.
Now, North Carolina has the most improved business tax climate in the country and is among the top states for personal income growth. He reduced personal income taxes for everyone to a low, flat rate, increased the standard income tax deduction for all taxpayers, eliminated the death tax, made charitable contributions fully deductible, retained the child tax credit and increases for families making less than $40,000 and lowered corporate income tax rates.
With regard to education, when the governor took office in 2013, it was clear that North Carolina’s education system needed a boost. Between 2002 and 2012 teacher pay and North Carolina fell behind more than any other state and state education spending was cut by about $1 billion between 2008 and 2011.
Student achievement results indicated that one in five students were not graduating from high school on time and of those who did graduate, approximately 65 percent needed to take remedial courses in our community colleges before they could become employable.
Even more troubling, North Carolina’s education leaders had not convened an education cabinet meeting in years and were not working together with a cohesive strategy to improve education.
Now, high school graduation rates are at an all time high reaching 85.4 percdent. We have increased funding for public education by hundreds of billions of dollars each year that the governor has been in office. Overall K – 12 funding has been increased by 12 percent during his tenure. Under the governor’s leadership, North Carolina is ninth in the nation for education funding, spending nearly 60 percent of all budget dollars on education.
North Carolina spends a higher percentage of tax revenues on higher education than any other state. The governor has worked with legislative leaders to raise teacher salaries and implement a higher career pay scale, bringing average teacher pay to $47,800. In addition the governor has committed over $1 billion to improve teacher pay in his first term.
As the ninth largest state and growing, North Carolina, under the leadership of Pat McCrory, understood the need to prepare for future growth by planning ahead and investing in the state’s