N.C. Bill Ties Corporate Breaks, Private Schools

ANGELA PASCOPELLA's picture
Friday, May 25, 2012

Tens of thousands of North Carolina public school students would leave for private classrooms if they got tuition help of up to $4,000 a year funded by corporations able to donate their money instead of paying state taxes, an analysis showed for legislation introduced Wednesday.

The bill introduced by House Majority Leader Paul Stam, R-Wake, and others would allow corporations a tax credit worth their entire yearly state tax debt for a tuition donation to a new plan to help parents afford private schools. Corporations that give more could take it off over five years, if the legislation is passed into law.

Those tax diversions would increase from $40 million next year to $98 million in 2016, according to estimates Stam said were performed by the Legislature's nonpartisan fiscal analysts. But analysts estimate the $4,000 per student tuition aid would lead 16,400 students to leave costlier public schools, ultimately saving money.

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