Charles Kolb, president of the non-partisan, business-led Committee for Economic Development in Washington, DC, drafted a letter in reaction to North Carolina’s proposed senate budget, which would dismantle Smart Start. Below is a portion of the letter:
“Given North Carolina’s leadership, I am surprised to read of proposals now coming from your State Senate to eliminate funding for the North Carolina Partnership for Children and to cut substantially administrative and program funding for local-level Smart Start partnerships. That just does not make good economic sense. Why tamper with a model that works? If you don’t believe what you hear from other states, listen to your own Duke University where officials there affirmed earlier this year that Smart Start is making a difference.
Almost all our states face tight budgets. They have to make choices and set priorities– just like households and businesses. But investing in our children really is a business issue. We need workers. We need child care for workers. We need education for our future workers. We want educated citizens who can sustain our democracy. North Carolina legislators must not be pennywise and pound foolish. Funding for Smart Start is an investment in the short- and long-term future of North Carolina and our country. A significant cut in or elimination of Smart Start and the state and local partnership infrastructure that sustains these programs makes absolutely no sense at all and is definitely not good business sense.”
Read the full letter here,Committee for Economic Development Response to Proposed Dismantling of Smart Start.