Archive for February, 2011
RICHMOND, VA – Highlighting the legislative achievements of the 60-member strong House Republican Majority Caucus in delivering real reforms and forward-looking investments to address the concerns of the Commonwealth, Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) today highlighted the positive results of the policy initiatives advanced by House Republicans this year. After cutting fees, reducing authorized debt, investing in core government services and depositing an additional $64 million into the Rainy Day Fund, the House of Delegates today adjourned sine die, bringing an end to the 2011 Regular Session of the Virginia General Assembly.
“The Republican-led House made real progress during the 2011 Regular Session and on many fronts, especially in passing a fiscally sound and structurally balanced state budget that funds core government services,” said Speaker Howell. “At our insistence, the final budget agreement includes no new fees or higher taxes. It has no earmarks for non-state agencies. There is no funding or debt for a new ‘Taj Mahal’ to replace the General Assembly Building. There is $67 million less in authorized debt. And, the accelerated sales tax is eliminated for 80% of retailers. Yet, there also are prudent investments in economic development, transportation, education, health care and other important services. Overall, we’ve had a very productive legislative session.”
Below is the outcome for a selected list of 100+ measures – grouped by topic – supported by the House Republican Majority. In all, about 1,600 pieces of legislation were approved by the General Assembly this year.
– Structurally Balancing Budget This Year Helps Avoid Calls for Higher Taxes Next Year –
– State Spending Revenues Remain below Fiscal Year 2007 Level –
RICHMOND, VA – Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) today issued the following statement on the agreement by House and Senate negotiators on House Bill 1500, amendments to the state budget:
“Like all Virginians, I am pleased that delegates and senators have reached agreement on differences over how best to amend the existing state budget. Balancing budgets is never easy, especially when the economic recovery is still uncertain and taxpayers, businesses and families continue struggling to live within their means. State finances are no different. Unlike Washington, Virginia has a constitutionally required balanced budget requirement. By setting clear priorities, the General Assembly has produced responsible and fiscally sound budget amendments. Today’s budget conference report funds core government services while also enacting sensible structural reforms in state spending that strengthen the state’s ledger and Virginia’s competitive position for more jobs and prosperity.
In a morning hour speech on the House floor today, Delegate Kirk Cox discussed some the differences between the budget that passed the House of Delegates and the budget that passed the State Senate.
Mr. Speaker and Members of the House, today we consider the Committee amendments to House Bills 1500 -- amendments to the current biennial budget which we adopted last year. The product I submit to you reflects the bi-partisan work of all 22 members of the Committee.
It is my pleasure Mr. Speaker to tell the body that the vote to report HB 1500 as amended was 22-0. A unanimous verdict on amendments to the budget that I believe looks beyond today and recognizing that we must seize the opportunity and begin to correct many of the deficiencies in the budget that we adopted last year.
Delegate Cox’s “Top Jobs of the 21st Century” higher education reform bill unanimously passes the House of Delegates
--House Bill 2510 passed by a vote of 98-0--
RICHMOND, VA – Delegate M. Kirkland “Kirk” Cox’s (R- Colonial Heights) “Top Jobs” higher education reform bill,
“We must ensure that Virginia’s higher education system is preparing our children for the jobs of the 21st century,” said Delegate Cox. “The ‘Top Jobs’ legislation will increase access for Virginia students to our colleges and universities at an affordable price and ensure that Virginia will continue to have a well-educated work force moving forward.”