06/13/12 — It might hurt: Legislature's budget wrangling a reality that must be faced

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It might hurt: Legislature's budget wrangling a reality that must be faced

No one wants to hear that money is tight -- and even fewer want to be the ones to offer up cuts to make necessary savings a reality.

It is just human nature to complain about the state of the finances and then to balk when it comes time to make the tough decisions.

And that is what is happening now in Raleigh.

The proposed state budget is not perfect. It includes some cuts that many legislators and North Carolina residents would likely rather not make.

Who consciously wants to cut jobs or reduce anyone's salary?

But the proposal is a first step in a necessary process -- getting North Carolina to the point where we are living within our means.

It is a tough thing to achieve -- especially in this economy and with so many needs across the state, but it is not a frivolous political exercise either.

We have seen what happens when you borrow like there is no tomorrow -- eventually, the piper comes to call to collect.

And if there was any doubt that perhaps the time has come for a reality check in Raleigh, keep in mind that part of the reason the state is struggling with unfunded debt right now is that leaders used temporary federal funds to bankroll teaching jobs -- and now, there is no more money.

Truth is that there will need to be some changes in how governments do business. There have to be. Maintaining status quo is just not a realistic option.

So even though it will hurt for a little while, in the long run, it is what is right for North Carolina.

Published in Editorials on June 13, 2012 10:46 AM