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Lawmakers counter Justice’s budget

The Dominion Post

CHARLESTON, W.Va.  — Legislative leaders countered Gov. Jim Justice’s budget clock with a couple visuals of their own on March 13.

Senate President Mitch Carmichael and House Speaker Tim Armstead, along with other legislators, stood between two oversize checks representing Justice’s tax-hike-based budget bouncing and their own that pays the bills, they said, without increased spending or tax hikes.

Justice has proposed a $4.5 billion budget built on revenue of only $4.05 billion, they said, and balanced by $450 million in tax increases, “the largest tax hike in history.”

Their budget comes in at $4.05 billion. It calls for cuts — or no spending increases, as they view it — in higher and elementary/secondary education and in the Department of Health and Human Resources, and calls on those entities to find the means to live within their budgets.

“We fully intend to pass a balanced budget that controls spending while facing the reality that our state government needs to live within its means,” Armstead said during a press conference.

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