JLF chairman John Hood on Gov. Pat McCrory’s $2.8 billion bond proposal:

As I read down the list of infrastructure projects the Connect NC bonds would fund, I saw many undeniable needs and high priorities. There were $15 million worth of renovations and expansions of the state’s courthouses. There were essential repairs to aging state office buildings. There was $11 million to repair or replace roofs at historic sites and other Cultural Resources facilities across the state, a need to which any recent visitor to these locations can readily attest.

But I also saw many projects that raised red flags. Keep in mind that every dollar of debt the state incurs to build or renovate something represents more than a dollar in principal and interest over the term of the bond that can’t be used for state operating expenses — including core services such as public safety and education — or left in the hands of private households and businesses to spend on their own operating and capital needs.

….If the referendum were held today, I’d probably vote yes on the highway bonds and no on the infrastructure bonds. State lawmakers should boil the latter down to essentials before placing them on the ballot. Right now, they’re biting off more than North Carolina taxpayers can chew — and stomach.

N&R breaks down Gboro’s university wish list, priorities including a a new School of Nursing building for UNCG ($124.8 million) and a new College of Engineering building for N.C. A&T ($104 million).