budget cuts

Tasnim Shamma

This summer, lawmakers cut more than $3.5 million from the state court system. Since 2009, more than $133 million has been cut from the judicial branch and more than 600 positions have been eliminated.

These cuts mean local courthouses are underfunded and overworked, says Todd Nuccio. He's the trial court administrator for Mecklenburg County: 

"Yes, the work gets done. But the question is: could we be doing so much more? Could we be doing so much better? And the answer is clearly yes."

But sometimes, the work doesn’t get done. Trials across the state are being canceled or postponed because of a shortage of court reporters caused by those budget cuts.

Teaching Farmers How To Farm In Concord

Jul 14, 2014
Tasnim Shamma

Say you want to become a farmer. If you didn't grow up on a farm, where do you start? In Cabarrus County, you can go to farm school.

The Elma C. Lomax Incubator Farm was launched in 2009 to give first-generation farmers an opportunity to learn the trade.

And earlier this month, it was the subject of a funding controversy that led to the organic farm being shut down for a week in the middle of the growing season.

Flickr/Seth Sawyers / http://www.flickr.com/photos/sidewalk_flying/4267034867/sizes/l/

Lawyers representing low-income school districts say North Carolina has abandoned its efforts to make sure it provides all students a sound, basic education.  They say budget cuts are keeping the state from living up to its commitment. They’re asking a judge to hold a hearing on the matter in August. 

WFAE’s Lisa Miller joins All Things Considered host Mark Rumsey to discuss:

bumeister1 / Flickr

Another round of the budget cuts known as the sequester are beginning to take effect, and once again there’s no agreement between Republican and Democratic lawmakers to head it off. But, a bipartisan group of North Carolina congressional lawmakers are pushing to exempt one program—payments to tobacco farmers—from the sequester’s effect.

Cleveland County defense contractor, Ultra Machines and Fabrication, will lay off as many as 100 employees in May due to cuts in federal contracts. It could be the first in a rising wave of job losses related to the sequester.

In the last three years, Ultra’s received $46 million in federal contracts—what that business, and most defense contractors rely on. But as the sequester and other federal budget cuts kick in, those contracts are drying up.