Carney’s budget proposal includes pay raise for state workers

DOVER — Gov. John Carney’s proposed operating budget marks a 3.8 percent increase over the current fiscal year and includes another pay raise for state employees. The general spending plan totals $4.43 billion, although the governor’s recommendations also include $679 million for capital projects, $48 million for nonprofits and $39 million in one-time money, most of which would go to supporting disadvantaged students.

Released every January, the governor’s budget proposal serves as a base for the Joint Finance Committee, which begins meeting Tuesday and will spend most of February hearing from state agencies, nonprofits and Delawareans. The committee will convene again in May to actually craft a spending plan, which the General Assembly typically votes on at the end of June.

Gov. Carney’s recommendations include few new big commitments, instead focusing on what Office of Management and Budget Director Mike Jackson described as “continued investments.”

His budget includes a $1,000 pay increase for most state workers, with teachers getting a 2 percent pay raise. Employees who negotiate salaries through collective bargaining, such as correctional officers, would not receive the pay bumps. State workers received an identical increase last year, although they also earned a one-time $500 bonus.

The capital bond bill contains a new $10 million fund for select road projects.

“The target for that is economic development projects that would be very attractive but would require transportation upgrades that aren’t in the capital program,” Gov. Carney said.

Staff writer Matt Bittle can be reached at 741-8250 or mbittle@newszap.com. Follow @MatthewCBittle on Twitter.

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