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Virginia Unable to Control Spending, Either

We have growled on numerous occasions that Arlington County government has been unable to control the spending of our tax dollars. Yet the political crowd in the Commonwealth have not done any better. The Virginia General Assembly ended their so-call “long session” on Saturday without agreeing on a budget for the FY 2009-2010 biennium. Members are now scheduled to return to Richmond “for an overtime session” tomorrow to try and decide on a budget and see where they are headed on transportation funding.

Consequently, it’s a timely reminder to look at how successful, or not, the General Assembly and the Governor have been at keeping Virginia’s budget under control. One need only look at the 2007 Update to the annual Review of State Spending (study #361), released on November 28, 2007 by the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission for the answer. Key findings in their report include:

  • “Virginia’s operating budget increased 99 percent over the past decade.”
  • “Adjusting for the effects of inflation and population growth, the budget increased by 38 percent, an average annual increase of 3.7 percent.”

Remember those two points the next time you get to vote for governor and state legislators.


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