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West Virginia University Bureau of Business and Economic Research director says some reason for optimism in state economy


The Register-Herald

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The director of West Virginia University’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research said there is some reason for optimism with some growth in West Virginia’s economy. However, there are still challenges ahead for the Mountain State to overcome.

In Wednesday’s state of the state address, Gov. Jim Justice rallied optimism and proposed new spending measures including pay raises for all state employees, increased funding to tourism and commerce, and eliminating the business inventory tax.

Gov. Jim Justice’s chief of staff and the director of the state budget office expressed optimism for the 2019 fiscal year and the budget going six years into the future.

“I’m as optimistic and positive as I’ve ever been about this fiscal year and the out years,” Mike McKown, state budget office director, told committee members earlier this week. “The bottom line is positive. We used to have negative red numbers. Now, it’s all positive.”

Secretary of Revenue Dave Hardy said December marked the first time since 2012 that revenue estimates were above initial estimates.

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