Paul Fogleman,

The major undertaking for the General Assembly each year is the plan for spending almost $25 billion in tax revenue, most of which comes from personal tax and sales taxes. This year, the process starts with Senators. The recommended budget from Gov. Roy Cooper was evaluated by joint committees with little comment. But the final draft which will be adopted around July 1 after House members and Senate leaders have come to a decision will be quite different. Republican legislators are not likely to adopt recommendations from a Democrat governor.

Funds for the industry’s research and testing centers seem to be secure at this time. Jointly, they receive about $1.8 million. Strong industry support for fulltime lobbying has resulted in bipartisan support among lawmakers.

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