As the N.C. gubernatorial candidates campaign across the state, education funding has emerged as one of the prominent issues of the race.
Republican Pat McCrory, the former Charlotte mayor who narrowly lost to current Gov. Bev Perdue in 2008, has focused his campaign on reforms to the state’s education system, including a merit-based pay system and a new type of diploma for high school students seeking to obtain a job or attend community college.
Democrat Walter Dalton, the former chairman of the N.C. Senate education committee and current lieutenant governor, has more experience in higher education policy.
He supports maintaining the current amount of need-based financial aid for college students, said Schorr Johnson, his campaign spokesman.
Dalton was one of the architects of the Higher Education Bond, passed by voter referendum in 2000, which provided funding for renovations in the Undergraduate Library, among other projects across the state, Johnson said.