RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Shortly after midnight on Friday, the House voted to approve the 2023 Appropriations Act, sending the bill to the Senate for a final vote. The Senate passed the budget shortly after 10:15 a.m.

According to a press release from Speaker of the House Tim Moore (R-Cleveland), the budget passed a bipartisan vote of 70-40. The Senate passed the budget 26-17. The budget includes expanding Medicaid, cuts taxes, invests in rural infrastructure and includes state employee raises.

The fiscal year began on July 1, 2023, but Republicans did not reach a deal until Tuesday.

“I could not be prouder of the budget approved by the House today, and I am encouraged by the bipartisan support it received from my friends on the other side of the aisle,” said Moore. “I look forward to Senate approval and the Governor’s signature on the 2023 Appropriations Act so it can be enacted as soon as possible.”

The budget now heads to Gov. Roy Cooper’s desk for a veto or signature.

Cooper released a statement Friday that blasted the legislature’s refusal to expand Medicaid.

“Health insurance for 600,000 more North Carolinians that brings more mental health and substance use disorder treatment, help for desperate rural hospitals and billions of dollars into our economy is a life-saving, monumental decision for our state.

Make no mistake, overall this is a bad budget that seriously shortchanges our schools, prioritizes power grabs, keeps shady backroom deals secret and blatantly violates the constitution, and many of its provisions will face legal action.

However, we must recognize this irresponsible legislature’s decade of refusal to expand Medicaid, which has caused life and death situations for so many North Carolinians and threatened the very existence of numerous rural hospitals. I will not allow people who are crying for help to wait any longer, so I am directing our Department of Health and Human Services to begin today the process for expanding Medicaid while allowing this budget to become law without my signature.”

Gov. Roy Cooper