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WV governor seeks furlough bill for budget impasse

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — If the legislature fails to pass a budget before June 30, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin is asking for a measure that would allow him to furlough state employees and pay the state’s bonds.

West Virginia has no mechanism for spending money without a balanced budget in the 2017 fiscal year, meaning the state government would essentially shut down.

“We’ve never had a shutdown before,” Tomblin said Wednesday. “If you don’t have any money, you can’t run state programs.”

The governor said the bill is “not to scare anybody, but just in case,” lawmakers can’t agree on how to fill a $271 million budget hole in the next 40 days, he’ll have the option to furlough state employees instead of massive layoffs…

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