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18th House District: NC's Budget

By Michelle Bliss

10-26-10 – This week, WHQR is asking candidates in the 18th District House race to discuss some of the top issues for New Hanover County. In this year's midterm elections, Republican candidate Beth Dawson and Democratic candidate Susi Hamilton are both vying for a house seat.

The state budget is facing a 3.5-billion-dollar budget gap for the next fiscal year. Democratic candidate Susi Hamilton says trying to balance the budget in upcoming years will require tough decisions.

"We're not going to close that deficit on state revenues until we put people back to work, but in the immediate future, tough decisions are going to have to be made. Programs will have to be cut."

Republican candidate Beth Dawson agrees that some programs will need to go.

"I believe in the zero-based budgeting approach where we need to cut out programs that are no longer being effective or accountable for the purpose they were originally funded."

Dawson also says that the first bill she'll sign if elected is the Taxpayer Protection Act. Dawson is a real estate broker and Hamilton is a former city planner for the City of Wilmington.