- With an overall spending increase lower than the rate of population growth and inflation, Virginia’s 2008-2010 Budget is fiscally responsible, structurally balanced and limited to the core services of government.
· These features make Virginia’s newest spending plan one of the leanest, most fiscally conservative in modern times.
- Of great importance to Virginia’s taxpayers, the 2008-2010 Budget does not raise taxes.
· By avoiding this too-often-utilized remedy to challenging fiscal times, the spending plan better equips the Commonwealth’s economy for greater prosperity and robust future growth.
- The plan slows the growth of overall spending, actually reducing expenditures in some instances by eliminating underperforming government programs. For example,
· Hard-to-Staff Schools
· Turn-Around Specialists
· Leadership Development Grants
· Career Switcher Mentor Program
· Education for a Lifetime Program
- It reduces the withdrawal from the Rainy Day Fund proposed by Governor Kaine by 30%.
· Although the Governor wanted to make a maximum withdrawal of $423 million, the final budget agreement limited the withdrawal to $296 million.
- The plan incurs less debt than either the Governor’s introduced budget or the budget approved by the Senate – amounting to approximately $1.9 billion less debt.
· Although the Governor wanted approximately $2.3 billion in tax-supported debt, the final budget agreement includes $478 million
- It also requires annual reductions of $17.5 million for state agencies and $50 million for local governments.
- The final budget agreement includes provisions to keep tuition and fee increases for in-state undergraduates to no more than 3%.