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Virginia General Assembly 2024 Week #7 Was “Show Me the Money” Time






by Cindy, cross-posted from VAPLAN

Last weekend the House and Senate budget committees presented their amendments to the (Governor’s) introduced budget bills. By the end of this week, the House and Senate had debated some amendments and passed their own budgets off the floor. But there will still be lots of negotiations before a single budget can be pieced together from the Governor’s budget and the House and Senate versions.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK, Virginia’s first Black woman to chair the powerful Finance Committee says as she presents her budget amendments: “Because of my experiences, I hold the areas of education and public safety close to my heart. People of my generation, Black and white alike, were unable to attend school during Massive Resistance, and I want to make sure that no child is ever denied the ability to have a quality public education or denied the ability to grow up in a safe and supportive community.”

  • 3 3/8% salary increases for teachers July 1, 2024 and again July 1, 2025, with the intent to reach the national average by 2028.
  • As a condition on all appropriations, Virginia must immediately take all actions necessary to rejoin the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and continue participating therein.
  • $65 million in 2024-25 and $84.5 million in 2025-26 in funding for WMATA, as well as the establishment of a Joint Subcommittee to study long-term funding solutions.
  • 3% salary raise for state employees.
  • Other big ticket items: Supporting the Virginia Housing Trust Fund, Reserves to offset unexpected increased Medicaid participation, K-12 At-Risk Add-on restructuring and funding, EV Rural infrastructure fund, Virginia’s share of Newport News US Naval housing project.
  • Removed from Governor’s introduced budget: over $11 million in undefined college campus “security initiatives” (example), $30 million in funding each year to his Lab School program, $20 million in funding each year to his experimental “Diploma Plus” program, cutting proposed funding for a public awareness campaign to promote “responsible fatherhood,” and removing his budget language that legislated changes to the earned sentence credit program.
  • And then there’s: $5 million to help Gainesville host the LPGA Solheim Cup, creation of PBS Appalachia, $750,000 each year to support AP/IB exam fee reduction for low-income students, authorizing the Governor to spend in preparation for VSU hosting 2024 Presidential debate, $300,000 to repave the Virginia Horse Center parking lot.
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