House Appropriations Committee reports biennial state budget bill
The House Appropriations Committee reported House Bill 1800, the budget bill, to the full House of Delegates by a vote of 19-2 on Wednesday.
The Appropriations Committee’s recommended package of amendments to the commonwealth’s 2020-2022 biennial budget includes:
- $231.4 million for a 5 percent teacher pay raise
- $84 million to maintain affordable access to Virginia colleges and universities
- Funding paid sick leave for essential workers
- $36.7 million GF and $38.1 million NGF to meet the minimum wage increase for home care workers and $4 million for sick leave for home care workers
- A $12 per patient, per day increase in nursing home payments
- Funding for a pilot program allowing public broadband authorities to compete for 10% of Virginia Telecommunications Initiative grants
- Additional funding to meet Chesapeake Bay clean-up benchmarks
- Funding to institute automatic expungement and end mandatory minimum sentences
House Appropriations Chair Luke Torian issued the following statement on the budget:
“Today, Virginia is in a strong fiscal standing thanks to prudent decisions made by the Administration and this committee throughout the last year. With a brighter revenue forecast and a clearer path out of the pandemic, this budget will continue the work of the last special session to build a safer, healthier, and more equitable commonwealth.
House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn issued this statement on the budget from the committee:
“In considering the more than 500 amendments submitted, we maintained the focus on fiscal responsibility that has kept our commonwealth on solid footing thus far. Based on the priorities I laid out at the start of the 2021 session, this committee’s work emphasized funding policies that will protect Virginia’s workers and foster financial security for all Virginia families. We are restoring more funding to key priorities and looking forward at Virginia’s needs in 2022 and beyond.
“Today, our Democratic House Majority has released a budget proposal focused on protecting families, keeping Virginia healthy, rebuilding our economy stronger and putting our Commonwealth on a path to come back from this pandemic better than before. The 2021 House budget proposal will provide nearly $500 million to address learning loss and make sure our schools hit the ground running when they return to in-person instruction, additional funding to put more counselors in schools and give our teachers a long overdue 5 percent pay raise.”
“With this budget, Virginians will be safer, healthier and more prosperous. I am grateful for the hard work by Chairman Torian and the Appropriations Committee and look forward to working with the Senate and Gov. Northam to pass a budget focused on building a better Virginia.”