- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 15, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A state government saving reserve bill portrayed by supporters as helping North Carolina lawmakers avoid big spending cuts when the next fiscal emergency arrives has cleared one General Assembly chamber.

The House gave overwhelming approval Wednesday to the bill that directs budget-writers to put money equal to 15 percent of predicted revenue growth annually into the state’s reserve, which currently contains nearly $1.5 billion. The bill also puts restrictions on how the reserves can be spent and how much can be spent before legislative supermajorities are required.

Bill sponsor Rep. Nelson Dollar of Cary says the legislation would turn North Carolina’s savings structure from one of the weakest among the states to one of the strongest. The measure passed by a vote of 110-3 and now goes to the Senate.

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