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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Federal budget cuts that will slash spending for schools, transportation and health programs is drawing attention from North Carolina businesses with defense contracts.

North Carolina’s chamber of commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers estimate that the defense spending cuts, part of an across-the-board budget balancing law, could cost 34,000 jobs in the state.

The North Carolina Chamber and the manufacturing lobbying group say they don’t know how many jobs will be lost from cuts to social and domestic spending due to take effect in January.

The groups point to trouble from the cuts agreed to last summer by congressional Republican leaders and President Barack Obama. Congress is scrambling to come up with a way to avoid automatic, $1.2 trillion in cuts in domestic and military programs over a decade.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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