Mar 01, 2009
From the AP: Key points of the just-approved VA budget
01 Mar 2009
Posted by VAR
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Major provisions of the two-year budget passed Saturday:
TAXES AND BUDGETING
-Uses $1.5 billion in federal stimulus money to restore many of the cuts to core services such as education, health care and public safety that Gov. Timothy M. Kaine made in December.
-Changes the remittance schedule for retailers with $1 million or more in monthly taxable sales from a calendar month to one that begins the 16th of each month, which will result in a one-time yield estimated at $98 million when it begins in 2010.
-Restores funding for school support staff such as janitors, secretaries and school nurses, but requests that the state Board of Education review staffing standards for teaching and support staff.
-Restores money for school construction projects and operating costs.
-Provides $126.7 million in federal funds to offset reductions at the state’s public colleges and universities, which is intended to keep tuition increases minimal.
-Increases student financial aid by 8.5 percent at a cost of $10 million.
-Fully restores the state’s share of funding to sheriffs, local police departments and all constitutional officers in cities and counties.
-Uses states funds and federal stimulus money to provide $2 million for Virginia’s two Internet Crimes Against Children task forces.
-Authorizes a behavioral corrections program that allows judges to suspend a portion of an inmate’s sentence if he or she completes a two-year substance abuse program. Only nonviolent, lower risk offenders are eligible.
-Creates a legislative committee to study steps to control the growing prison population, particularly through early release and electronic monitoring programs.
HEALTH AND HUMAN RESOURCES
-Restores about $150 million in cuts to the Medicaid program.
-Restores 200 eliminated waivers to help families pay to care for mentally disabled family members at home or in the community as opposed to in a state hospital, and adds 200 more.
-Maintains funding for community health centers and free clinics.
-Restores money to continue operating the Southeastern Virginia Training Center in Chesapeake, the Commonwealth Center for Children and Adolescents in Staunton and the adolescent unit at Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institutes.
-Restores funding for the state’s three poison control centers.
-Provides $749.1 million for construction projects on college campuses and others already authorized.
-Provides $12.5 million for the governor to use to recruit businesses to Virginia.
-Provides $2.5 million to promote in-state tourism.
-Requires the Secretary of Transportation to provide details on projects funded through an estimated $800 million in federal stimulus money designated for highway and transit use.
HT: Whipple Clips