Senate Budget "fiscally irresponsible" - Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling
STATEMENT OF LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR BOLLING ON ADOPTION OF SENATE BUDGET
-Bolling calls Senate budget “fiscally irresponsible” and encourages House Republicans to stand strong for a more conservative budget agreement-
RICHMOND - Earlier today, the Senate of Virginia adopted a series of amendments to the state budget for the current fiscal year and a new budget for the 2008/2010 biennium. In response to this action, Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling issued the following statement:
“I am very disappointed in the budget recommendations approved earlier today by the Senate of Virginia. The Senate’s budget totally ignores our state’s slowing economy, fails to fund many of the core responsibilities of state government, and spends millions of dollars on new and expanded state programs at a time when we simply cannot afford them.
“And if that was not bad enough, the Senate budget attempts to pay for these new programs by taking excessive amounts of money from the state’s rainy day fund, redirecting $180M that had been earmarked for transportation construction to other government programs, incurring massive amounts of new state debt, and embracing overly optimistic revenue projections for the upcoming biennium.
“The Senate budget is an example of fiscal irresponsibility.
“However, I am very proud of Senate Republicans, who stood together and argued for a more fiscally responsible budget. If the budget recommended by Senate Republicans had been approved, we would have stopped the raid on the rainy day fund and transportation, eliminated funding for most of the new and expanded government programs the Democrats supported, and approved a much more fiscally responsible bond package.
“I applaud the Republican members of the Senate for standing strong in support of these important conservative principles. Even though their efforts were unsuccessful, it is clear that Republican legislators are demanding fiscal responsibility in Richmond, while our Democratic colleagues continue to act as if money grows on trees.
“These are challenging economic times for our state, and in these challenging economic times government should do what families and businesses have to do. We must learn to tighten our belts, prioritize our spending decisions and live within our means. We must also avoid the temptation to allow short term spending decisions to affect our long term fiscal stability.
“The Republican members of the House of Delegates must now continue to fight for these conservative principles and secure substantial changes to the final budget that will be approved before the end of the legislative session.”
I hope house members will fight for conservative principles.