Republican-led General Assembly’s conservative budgeting leads to $132 million budget surplus

chriswest2017 General Assembly, Budget, Issues

Following responsible action to close a budget shortfall last year, the conservative budget amendments passed by Republicans in the Virginia General Assembly in 2017 have led to a $132 million budget surplus. The surplus was announced Wednesday in Richmond.

“The announcement of a budget surplus is good news for the Commonwealth, and is the result of the Republican-led General Assembly’s responsible, conservative budgeting,” said Virginia House Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford). “We have consistently worked to chart a responsible fiscal course for our Commonwealth by making wise budget decisions. I want to thank Chairman Jones, Vice Chairman Landes and the entire House Appropriations Committee for their work on behalf of the House of Delegates.”

“The General Assembly’s consistently cautious approach to the state budget has once again put us in a strong position at the end of the fiscal year,” said Speaker-designee Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights). “The budget language requires 50 percent of this surplus to be placed in a cash reserve to improve Virginia’s bond rating outlook. That 50 percent threshold is the floor of what should be considered for the reserve, and I hope the General Assembly will consider investing all of the surplus in the reserve fund. This prudent action, combined with efforts to spur meaningful economic growth and protect our Right-to-Work law, will be seen as a positive step by the rating agencies.”

“The House Appropriations Committee works hard every year to ensure that taxpayer dollars are spent wisely,” said Chairman S. Chris Jones (R-Suffolk). “We make tough decisions and set priorities, and this surplus is a testament to that work. I agree with Speaker-designee Cox that we should set aside the entirety of this surplus for the cash reserve fund to guard against economic uncertainty. This fund, in addition to continued investment in the rainy day fund, will improve our posture with bond rating agencies and protect our prestigious Triple-A bond rating.”