Pilot Light: Extension Service Braces for Budget Cuts
The Moore County Center of the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service is holding its breath for the state budget ax to fall.
Craven Hudson, Moore County's Extension Service director, says his office does not know the extent of budget cutting but hopes no positions will be cut. At present, the Moore County office is fully staffed and no vacancies exist.
The Extension Service, an educational outreach of the state land grant universities, is included within the budget of the UNC system. The universities have the option of charging higher tuition, but the Extension Service does not charge tuition, leaving it at the mercy of the universities.
However, funds saved through vacant positions in other counties and other cost-cutting measures may cushion the losses. Moore County also has the advantage of support from the county, which, even with a 6 percent cut, appropriated about $380,000 for the Extension Service in the 2010-11 budget.
"We're not out of the woods," Hudson said. "We're not asking the state to spare us from cuts. We just want to be treated equitably."
Hudson said the Extension Service really appreciates the help received from the county.
REDISTRICTING - The Senate and House Joint Committee on Redistricting is hosting hearings across the state this week.
Two such hearings are scheduled in this area tonight, both beginning at 7 o'clock. The simultaneous hearings are planned in the Harris Lecture Hall in Maddox Hall on the Campbell University campus in Buies Creek and in Room 110 in the Computer Technology Center on the campus of Randolph Community College in Asheboro.
The state is required to reapportion legislative districts every 10 years after the U.S. Census Bureau's population census. Congressional and county redistricting are also required.
LEAGUE - The president of the League of Women Voters of North Carolina has written a letter to the chairman of the state Senate Redistricting Committee urging additional hearings once the district maps are redrawn.
In her letter, Kathleen Balogh commends the legislature for the series of hearings currently being held across the state.
But Balogh also told Sen. Bob Rucho that online availability of the proposed districts would be insufficient for public involvement purposes.
"We understand the constraints upon the committee members' time, the limited time allotted for approval of the redistricting plan by the U.S. Justice Department, and the need to have the districts defined by the end of the year, if not sooner," she wrote. "However, the league requests that you allow full citizen involvement in the redistricting process from beginning to end by holding public hearings on the Joint Commission's redrawn district maps prior to their legislative approval."
More like this story