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Tentative budget deal reached with legislative Democrats, not governor 

President Pro Tempore, Phil Berger, general assembly
President Pro Tempore, Phil Berger, general assembly

Sources connected to the North Carolina House and the North Carolina Senate confirmed to CJ that they have firm commitments from enough Democrats in both chambers of the General Assembly to pass a final compromise with enough votes that Gov. Roy Cooper will either have to sign the budget or allow it to become law without his signature.

Should Cooper veto the budget, a minimum of two Democrats in the Senate and three State House members have pledged to override Cooper and enact a new budget.

It appears this was communicated to Cooper recently leading the governor’s office to release a statement saying:

Republican leaders have informed the Governor that they will release a budget on Monday that will have a number of the Governor’s priorities that were proposed in his budget and discussed in negotiations over the last few weeks, including increases in education funding. They also informed him that Medicaid Expansion would not be included because the Speaker could not get enough Republican House members to support it. When he has reviewed it, the Governor will make a decision to sign or veto the budget based on what is best for the people of North Carolina.

State House leadership confirmed tonight that no deal has been struck with the governor. The legislature plans to pass the budget and send it to Cooper on November 18 or 19.

One way or another, sources in the House and Senate tell CJ they now are confident a new budget will be in place by December.

Those sources believe the governor is unlikely to veto the budget and if he does he will face an almost certain override for the first time. However, the governor may allow the budget to go into place without his signature 10 days after it passes.