CHARLOTTE – Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton and his Republican opponent in November's gubernatorial election, Pat McCrory, both talked jobs Tuesday morning with the North Carolina Technology Association.
The two candidates spoke to a couple hundred people at the convention and outlined their plans for improving the state's economy by growing jobs.
"I'm running to build up North Carolina, not tear it down," said Dalton.
"We need to rebuild the brand of North Carolina and make it No. 1 again," said McCrory.
They presented two entirely different plans for job creation.
"If you hire somebody that's been unemployed for six months, you get a tax credit," said Dalton, whose plan includes a train-to-hire program that encourages employers to "try out" a person for eight weeks. "It will cut back on our unemployment debt, to tell you the truth, and it will allow the employer to test that employee out and give that person some job skills.”
Speaking to a group of reporters, Dalton talked about the biggest difference in their plans.
"Mine's real. His is political," said Dalton. "If you do away with the corporate income tax and lower the personal income tax, you're going to hurt the middle class working people."
The Republican frontrunner criticized Dalton for just now coming up with a plan.
"Where has he been the past 10 years that he's been a part of state government," said McCrory, who told the crowd about the importance of using technology to make government more efficient. "We need a long-term plan to fix a broken economy in North Carolina and tech is going to be a big part of my plan to do just that.”
McCrory also outlined his tax plan to stimulate private business.
"Reduce the income tax on existing and new businesses so we don't have to hand out multi-million dollar tax breaks to new business to beg new business to get here," said McCrory.
With the fragile economy still top of mind for many of the voters, both candidates are expected to talk a lot more about jobs over the next seven weeks.