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Black lawmakers urge North Carolina to boost HIV prevention spending

Black lawmakers urge North Carolina to boost HIV prevention spending

At a news conference at the North Carolina Legislative Building last week, African-American lawmakers urged house budget writers to include money for HIV prevention. In North Carolina, African-Americans made up about 70% of new HIV cases in 2004, the lawmakers noted. The senate budget plan includes $1 million for the state AIDS Drug Assistance Program, and Gov. Mike Easley's budget proposal included HIV prevention money, but the house budget currently being drawn up does not include any HIV funding. State representative Thomas Wright says the general assembly should appropriate $5 million for comprehensive treatment and education efforts. "If we don't do it now, it's going to cost us 10 times more in the future," added representative Larry Shaw. (AP)

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