McDonnell heralded in August a $544.8 million surplus for FY 2011, but has now provoked questions about why he is asking state agencies to cut their budgets by six percent. Reasons: falling sales tax revenue, possibility of a double dip recession, and the more than $18.5 billion in unfunded pension liabilities. Which the Commonwealth intercepted $600 million to make up a budget shortfall.
Places to cut? McDonnell may want to start looking at the $330 million in unused, earned-time-off that state workers can demand a check for.
A new poll shows the Va. Senate race has hardly budged in three months. Quinnipiac shows former Govs. Tim Kaine (D) and George Allen (R) still in a dead heat: Kaine, 45 percent; Allen, 44 percent.
Among the GOP, former CEO Herman Cain and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney now tie each other 21 – 21 percent among Virginia primary voters. Both tie President Obama in theoretical matchups, the poll found.
Michele Bachmann has closed her Virginia office in Old Town. As the campaign slashes staff, Bachmann refocuses an all-or-nothing gambit on Iowa and New Hampshire.
Lynchburg-based Liberty University is also asking the U.S. Supreme Court to accept its case against the national health care law, or Affordable Care Act. The private Christian school’s challenge was dismissed by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, but Liberty’s attorneys say their case deserves a look from the high court. The university’s attorneys say they are the only ones to challenge the constitutionality of the health care law’s “employer mandate”, a rule which requires employers with over 50 employees to offer health coverage or pay a penalty.