Bill aimed at cutting NC Pre-K eligibility passes committee - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Bill aimed at cutting NC Pre-K eligibility passes committee

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A bill in our state legislature could change the NC Pre-K eligibility guidelines, potentially cutting the number of children in half.

It's House Bill 935, sponsored by State Representative Justin Burr.

We broke down the numbers and the income requirement caps currently are at little more than $41,000 for a family of three.  That's 75 percent of the state median, which is about twice the federal poverty rate.

House Bill 935 would reduce the current income requirements to the federal poverty level, that's only a little more than $19,000.

We talked with Pre-K officials in Pitt County who say the bill could reduce the number of children in our state's Pre-K program by nearly half.

Rep. Burr was quoted saying the bill's reduction would put the program at a level that could be more appropriately funded but if flies in the face of Governor McCrory's recently released budget.

In it, the governor asks to fund an additional 5,000 at-risk children, brining our state total to 30,000 four-year-olds per year in the Pre-K program.

Opponents of the bill echo the governor's position of further funding Pre-K and many of you on Facebook felt the same.

Now there are other ways into the pre-k program, like children of active duty military and special education plans or disabilities - they also qualify but this bill could tighten those requirements as well.

The bill still has to move through the House and the Senate.

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