The 2023 General Assembly session drew to a close last Saturday. And with divided majorities in the General Assembly, it was a little underwhelming. Despite a year of big, hot topic issues, little was accomplished on abortion rights, gun control, or even setting up a market for cannabis. So after six weeks, we find ourselves more or less back where we started. To understand the perspective from inside the GA, we talk with Senator Barbara Favola, who represents parts of northern Virginia.
Things aren’t entirely over yet… lawmakers are still considering amendments to the state's two-year budget. The House and Senate have very different ideas of what to do with Virginia’s significant budget surplus. House Republicans want to give that surplus back to taxpayers through a billion dollars in tax cuts. On the other hand, Senate Democrats want to use the money to boost social programs that have been under-funded for many years. Particularly public schools. Here to walk us through this is Laura Goren, Director of Research and Education Policy at The Commonwealth Institute.
Check out more information on Virginia’s budget process and how the two proposals compare on The Commonwealth Institute’s website