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State Leaders Should Be Nervous

6:25 AM, Dec 17, 2012   |    comments
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RALEIGH, NC -- Like the rest of the country, nearly all North Carolina citizens would face automatic tax increases and see services scaled back without a plan to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff.

And it should make North Carolina state leaders even more nervous. The state unemployment rate remains the fifth-highest in the nation, and outside groups calculating the pain of spending cuts said research and defense sectors could lead to tens of thousands of additional job losses in North Carolina.

The "fiscal cliff" refers to the more than $1 trillion in cuts that will be triggered unless Congress and the president come up with a different plan for reducing the deficit by Jan. 1.

The state's high jobless rate also could mean roughly 100,000 people would lose or be unable to receive extended federal unemployment benefits expiring at the end of the month.

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