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Senator Edwards Reports WNC Schools to Receive $42 Million if Budget Signed Into Law

Funding is for new schools or repairs/upgrades to existing schools

RALEIGH, N.C. – The proposed 2019-21 budget released this week by the North Carolina General Assembly includes $42 million in capital funding for Asheville City, Henderson County, Buncombe County, and Transylvania County schools. The resources could be used for either new schools or repairs and updates to existing schools.

Local School Administrative UnitProceeds Allotment
Asheville City $2,713,629
Henderson County $13,511,592
Buncombe County $14,687,531
Transylvania County $10,895,356

Senator Edwards said, “If this budget gets signed into law, the District will receive an infusion of much-needed funding to update our schools. Students deserve a modern learning environment, and this historic investment will help deliver for our western counties. I hope the Governor signs the budget into law so our counties receive this funding.”

The funding is just one piece of a $4.4 billion commitment to school capital over the next ten years. Of that total, $1.5 billion would come from the State Capital Infrastructure Fund (SCIF), which receives a dedicated, automatic appropriation from the General Assembly every year. An additional $1 billion will come from the Public School Capital Fund and $1.9 billion from the Needs-Based Capital Program.

The $42 million allocation would come from the SCIF, but each county may also receive additional funding from the Needs-Based Capital Program or the Public School Capital Fund.

If the budget passes, investments from these accounts to schools around the state could begin immediately, unlike a bond which would take several years. Additionally, funding from the three accounts described above is debt-free, meaning the state wouldn’t waste money on unnecessary interest payments. A bond, by contrast, would consume hundreds of millions or billions of dollars from state coffers in wasted interest payments, diverting resources away from other priorities.

Governor Cooper will soon decide whether to sign or veto these critical investments.