House Speaker Joe Hackney said the legislative session that adjourned today will be remembered for protecting public education during a 20 percent drop in revenue.
"In the context of a severe recession, I feel like we have saved public education and its core mission," he said during a news conference after gaveling the House to a close after seven months. "We did it without pay cuts, without furloughs and, I think, fairly."
Lawmakers return in May for the "short session" held during election years.
He said lawmakers' essential task when the session opened in January was to get through the next two years of a rough economy.
Hackney said he does not expect the legislature to have to return for a special session if revenue numbers worsen, saying that Gov. Beverly Perdue, a Democrat, has shown she can manage the budget when revenues dip. He also voiced skepticism that a Senate proposal to overhaul the tax system would be ready for lawmakers to take up in the fall.