A TALE OF TWO LEGISLATURES

Paul Fogleman,

In recent days it seems as if North Carolina has two legislatures in session. One is consumed with social legislation: gay marriage and magistrates, a strong anti-abortion law, immigration. The other is tackling differing philosophies dealing with revenues and expenditures in a state budget. The Senate has designated the budget writing to top leaders. Appropriations subcommittees will have little, if any, input. With the Senate already sending out word that it wants a plan significantly different from that crafted in the House, the budget faces a long road ahead. (Appropriations for the Manufacturing Solutions Center and the Textile Technology Center are included in the House version.)

THE PASSWORD IS ‘TRANSPORTATION’

Gov. Pat McCrory wants a multi-billion dollar bond referendum to upgrade the state’s infrastructure. The House and Senate have been cool to the idea, instead working on a budget that weans the General Fund from highway tax revenue. The House budget proposal includes over $300 million in new fees and taxes to make the Department of Transportation self-supporting with revenue to underwrite highway projects across the state. Some legislators are wondering if the governor will veto a budget that does not include a bonds package.

A conflict between the governor and the GOP-dominated General Assembly could create a tough climate for the 2016 elections.

SINGLE FACTOR CORPORATE TAX

The House budget did not include a provision that would have manufacturers calculate their corporate taxes on sales alone. Currently, calculations are based on payroll, value of assets AND sales. Expect the Senate to insist on the single-sales tax provision. Recently a House member who is working with his local community to retain a national corporate headquarters was told the single-sales factor is going to be a major factor. South Carolina has attracted a number of North Carolina corporations with the single-sales calculations

Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger is an advocate for the change along with others senators including Sen. Andy Wells, a Hickory businessman. If the Senate follows through with the change, it is expected the House will follow.

AS THE WORLD TURNS

“The Lord helps those who help themselves.” How many times have we heard this? But this wisdom is tied to the manufacturing renaissance for hosiery, textiles, and related industries. A survey of companies that are reporting a slow, steady growth in sales insist a lot of hard work and tactical thinking are involved. Our centers are prepared to help mills with some heavy lifting in development of new products and documentation of results. The world market is changing and U.S. mills can capitalize on the trends. If…

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