Gov. Kaine announces budget shortfall plan

Published 3:33 pm Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Today, Governor Kaine announced his plan to cover the budget shortfall of nearly $2.9 billion in revenue the state would lack through 2010 .

The plan includes 1,500 state layoffs, a 30-cent increase in the state cigarette tax, $400 million in cuts in health care and public education and the use of $500 million from the state’s rainy day fund.

In a prepared statement released earlier, Governor Kaine said this is a tough time for all Virginians and many would be called upon to make changes.

“We meet in a time of tremendous challenge for the Commonwealth and its citizens. The national economic recession is being felt by families and businesses across the country,” Kaine said. “As citizens and businesses have to tighten their belts and live within their means, state governments must do the same. This is a time for calm resolve to make tough decision that will position us for a better future.”

See Friday’s edition of the Tidewater News for local reaction.