Leaders in the North Carolina House and Senate announced an agreement on Wednesday, March 8, on a budget amount for the 2023-2024 fiscal year.

The increase for the biennium will be 10.5% — 6.5% the first year and 3.75% the second year — according to a statement put out by House Speaker Tim Moore’s office. The 2022-2023 fiscal year budget clocked in at $27.9 billion, meaning the increase will amount to around $2.8 billion.

“Reaching this agreement with the Senate on the overall spend is an encouraging start to crafting another responsible budget that addresses the needs of North Carolinians, including key investments in teacher and state employee raises, infrastructure, and workforce development,” said Moore.

“We have more work to do to ensure those needs are met, to secure a bright future for North Carolina in spite of the failing Biden economy that has impacted us all,” Moore added. “I am confident we can keep our state on the same path to continue the growth and promise our state offers so many.”

Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat, approved budgets sent to him by the General Assembly in 2021 and 2022. Prior to that, he had not signed a budget since 2017.

“The consensus spending increase for the first year falls between the House and Senate versions of their respective spending cap limit proposals,” said Paige Terryberry, senior analyst for fiscal policy for the John Locke Foundation. “Those limits are tied to inflation and population growth. Despite our high inflationary environment, this spending is aggressive — especially on the brink of a downturn.”