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By GARY D. ROBERTSON
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — House Democrats say the $1.2 billion in proposed education cuts next year rolled out by Republican counterparts this week are reckless and could lead to more than 20,000 job losses unless the GOP agrees to extend some of the temporary taxes set to expire.

Minority Leader Joe Hackney and others derided Thursday the plan the Department of Public Instruction says would eliminate money for more than 12,000 staff positions, more than two-thirds of them teacher assistants in grades two and three. The North Carolina Association of Educators said several thousand more public school workers would lose their jobs through discretionary cuts placed upon local districts.

Advocates for early childhood education and women’s health also criticized GOP plans to hold back funds for Smart Start and Planned Parenthood.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-04-14-11 1427EDT

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