October 13, 2017/Press

GOP Lawmakers Put Personal and Political Gain over Taxpayers, Constituents Continue to Lose

RALEIGH – This week, news broke that the NC GOP snuck a six-figure giveaway to a GOP donor in the 2017 budget, a shocking move but par for the course for a Republican caucus with a long history of putting donors before their constituents. Here’s a recap of what it costs to get a favor from the NC GOP:$5,000 to Secure a State Contract at the Expense of Local Schools

Only a day after accepting a first-time donation of $5,000 from his “good friend” Rickie Day, Rep. David Lewis snuck a provision into the state budget that ensured Day’s company would keep its towing and impound contract with the state. The move was so sketchy it prompted another Republican legislator to file an ethics complaint.

Two years later, an audit revealed that the same company Lewis fought for could not account for more than 200 cars valued at over $600,000, leading state auditors to wonder if the company “inappropriately benefitted from the contract.” The sale of impounded cars at auction benefits local schools, meaning Rep. Lewis sold out our children and jeopardized funding for public schools for $5,000.

$10,000 for “Garbage Juice in a Snow Blower”

Senator Trudy Wade took $10,000 from the makers of “garbage juice in a snow blower” in exchange for HB576, a bill that authorized landfills to use the machine to spray “bacteria from rotted food, diaper waste…heavy metals, and other toxic pollutants” into the backyards of nearby residents.

Trouble is, waste management companies don’t even want it. The two companies that agreed to test the process now say it isn’t a “viable alternative for our liquids management.” Sen. Wade sold out our environment for $10,000 to clear the way for a technology that companies don’t even want to use.

The Promise of Future Work to Ensure a Six-Figure Development Deal

In late June, former Representative Chris Millis snuck an earmark into the 2017 budget that ensured a six-figure taxpayer-funded giveaway to prominent GOP donor and real estate developer Raiford Trask.

Just one month later, Millis’ engineering firm released plans to build a separate project owned by Heide Trask Jr, a member of the Trask family. Rep. Millis skipped town later, but only after securing future work for his engineering firm in exchange for giving taxpayer money to anchor a GOP mega-donor’s project.

Republicans in Raleigh have shown time and time again that they’ll only fight for North Carolinians if they can cut a big campaign check first,” said NCDP Executive Director Kimberly Reynolds. “It’s high time GOP lawmakers started looking out for someone other than themselves and their donors.”