2017 General Assembly passes amended two-year state budget, adjourns on time

chriswest2017 General Assembly

Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford), Majority Leader Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights), Caucus Chairman Tim Hugo (R-Fairfax), Majority Whip Jackson Miller (R-Manassas), and Deputy Majority Leader Todd Gilbert (R-Shenandoah) issued the following statement on the adjournment of the 2017 General Assembly session.

“The 2017 General Assembly has been a successful and productive one for the people of the Commonwealth. We adjourned on time, adopted an amended balanced budget ahead of schedule and offered positive solutions on the issues that matter most to Virginians.

“Our amended budget reflects the priorities facing the Commonwealth.  The budget is conservative and responsible, reduces borrowing, eliminates new fees and charts a responsible course.  We secured the future of state employees by giving them a much-needed salary increase, including our hardworking men and women at the Virginia State Police. We made a significant investment into K-12 education, $18 million more than originally proposed by Governor McAuliffe, and increased flexibility for local school divisions. Our budget also includes a 2% pay raise for teachers. We also invested over $20 million more than the Governor to support the Commonwealth’s public colleges and universities. The budget makes strategic investments into economic development efforts, but adds additional oversight to ensure that all taxpayer dollars are spent wisely. We also dedicate $1.5 million to expand domestic violence prevention, treatment and counseling programs and services for women and children.

“The House of Delegates continues to govern and lead on the issues that matter most to Virginians. We advanced a legislative agenda to grow Virginia’s economy and create good paying jobs, improve our schools so all children can succeed, and increase access and lower costs in healthcare without expanding broken government programs.

“We are proud of what we accomplished this session for the people of the Commonwealth.”