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Virginia's General Assembly started over Wednesday and, like a hinky computer that a reboot fails to fix, remained stuck.

Thus begins an article that chronicles the start of the special session of the Virginia Legislature that Governor Mark Warner ordered because of the inability for the two chambers of the legislature to come to terms that, well... Yes, Virginia, the state is broke. Actually, the remarkable thing about this turn of events is despite the recalcitrance of the House of Delegates, which is populated with Stephen Moore/Grover Norquist acolytes, all sides have resigned themselves to raising some form of taxes. In fact, to spite the business community who endorsed Governor Warner's call for income and sales tax hikes, this same House went out of its way to make sure the business community felt the brunt in their plans to hike taxes, something Republicans have long since evangelized against. (I guess I should have begun by stating that both chambers of are Virginia legislature is controlled by Republicans. Mark Warner, governor of Virginia is a Democrat.)

They have until June to come up with a budget plan before the state could be forced to shut down. However, local county governments which are subsidized heavily by the state, thanks in part to the partial repeal of the personal property tax, need to know what will happen before hand so they can craft their budgets. Plus Wall Street is incredibly nervous, and my downgrade the state's credit rating because of this budget uncertainty.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
rtfirefly
Mar. 18th, 2004 08:46 am (UTC)
I miss the days of Chuck Robb, Jerry Baliles, and Doug Wilder. They managed the Commonwealth soundly, and brought Virginia into the latter half of the 20th century. (You know what a job that was!) Allen and Gilmore, along with the Norquist disciples in the legislature, have basically trashed the place.

I wish Virginia would matter less to me, after five years of living across the Potomac. It hasn't happened yet.
sterlingnorth
Mar. 18th, 2004 12:42 pm (UTC)
Funny you should mention Wilder...
A few days back, Wilder met with George Allen to blast Warner for reniging on his campaign promise to not raise taxes -- Wilder endorsed Warner for gov in 2001. This was at the time the House floated the idea to send the budget to referendum.

However, I do miss the thoughtful moderates of yesterweek vs the showboating ideologues that dominate the house.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )