Wednesday, June 24, 2015

North Carolina state senators want to drop the drivers education program, in the form of a Senate budget amendment

Tucked in the Senate budget is a provision that saves the state $26 million by eliminating free driver’s education at public high schools. Gov. Pat McCrory’s proposed budget also eliminates money for driver’s ed.

Doing so, however, could cost families $200-$400 per driver-to-be, unless that driver wants to wait until he or she is 18, at which point state law allows people to get a license without driver’s ed.

Sen. Ralph Hise, a Republican from Spruce Pine, recognizes that the new expense could be a burden on N.C. families. His solution? Eliminate the requirement for driver’s ed altogether.

Instead of valuable classroom and road time with instructors, the Senate proposal would require students to get an 85 on a written test at 15, then gain experience by driving with a parent or other adult for 85 hours, up from 60.

Who keeps track of the 85 hours? It’s an honor system.

Although the quality of driver’s ed courses can vary, statistics show what common sense suggests – that drivers who don’t take driver’s ed are involved in more collisions and fatalities on the road. But on the warped scales that policymakers are using in Raleigh, safety loses out to the need for revenue.

Thursday June 18th 2015, after 15 minutes of debate, the Senate voted 32-15 to give final approval to the two-year government spending plan written by Republicans. Senators gave initial approval Wednesday after five hours of debate and more than 20 amendments.

The bill now returns to the House, which passed a very different version last month. The House budget spends almost $700 million more than the Senate does next year. The Senate plan offers many more policy changes. The two chambers will have to work out differences.

Gov. Pat McCrory presented his own budget ideas in March and will be asked to sign any bill into law.

1 comment:

  1. What planet do these morons live on for Pete's sake?