Progress NC Action questions governor's priorities
RALEIGH—Progress NC Action today called on Gov. McCrory to rescind the big raises he handed out to two 24-year-old former campaign staffers until he gives a pay raise to North Carolina's public school teachers and state employees.
According to a report from the Associated Press, two 24-year-old former campaign staffers who work at the NC Department of Health and Human Services received raises of 35% and 37% in April. The staffers named Ricky Diaz and Matthew McKillip—who are two years out of college with no graduate degrees—now make $85,000 and $87,500 respectively.
McKillip was named Chief Policy Advisor for the department despite a glaring lack of credentials.
The raises come only weeks after Gov. McCrory directed state agencies to freeze salary increases. Meanwhile, teachers and state employees did not receive any pay increases in the recently enacted state budget.
According to Progress NC Action's calculations, a 24-year-old teacher with two years experience in Haywood County would make an estimated $32,755.* That's less than half of McCrory's young staffers.
"Teachers are furious that Gov. Pat McCrory seems to care more about his political cronies than paying teachers what they deserve. North Carolina is 46th in the nation in teacher pay and that will likely fall even further after another year without pay increases. Gov. McCrory has got his priorities upside-down," said Gerrick Brenner, Executive Director of Progress NC Action.
* According to the NC Dep. of Public Instruction a second-year teacher makes a base salary of $30,800. Progress NC Action added the most recent average local salary supplement available to arrive at the estimate.