RICHMOND, VA – Speaker of the House of Delegates William J. Howell (R-Stafford) issued the following statement this afternoon after the passage of House Bill 29 and House Bill 30, the House budget bills for fiscal years 2010-12 and 2012-14, respectively:
“This afternoon the House of Delegates approved the House budget plan for fiscal years 2012-14 on a bi-partisan vote of 79-21. The House budget is a structurally, substantively and fiscally responsible plan that members of the House Appropriations Committee and Staff have assembled with significant input from all members of the House of Delegates,” said Howell.
“The House budget includes strategic reserves in light of ongoing economic uncertainty, specifically $300 million for the Rainy Day Fund, $50 million for the Federal Action Contingency Trust (FACT) Fund and $42.2 million for a secondary revenue reserve to protect against downward revisions to the fiscal year 2013 revenue forecast. These prudent steps will protect the Commonwealth from future economic difficulties, federal spending reductions and will solidify the integrity of our triple-AAA bond rating,” Howell continued.
The House budget – based off of Governor McDonnell’s record $85 billion biennial budget – includes significant investments in public education, aid to localities, restoration of “safety net” services and an additional 990 ID waiver slots and 100 DD waiver slots over the 2012-14 biennium, well beyond the number necessary to satisfy Department of Justice requirements.
This afternoon the House also passed House Bill 29, the so-called “caboose bill” which contains various amendments to the fiscal year 2010-12 budget, on a unanimous vote of 100-0.
“Chairman Putney and the entire Appropriations Committee have produced another remarkable budget and deserve our thanks for all their hard work on House Bills 29 and 30. The Appropriations Committee engages all 100 members of the House of Delegates in developing the budget is the reason for its success. My colleagues and I in the House hope that Senate Democrats will take note of our good-faith efforts to work across political lines in developing a fiscally responsible budget.”