Virginia News Stand: December 18, 2009Dec 18, 2009
Annotations & Elucidations The Snowbound Edition
We have lots of material built up from the last two days, plus Governor Tim Kaine's shocking income tax increase and budget proposals earlier today that, as one radio reporter said, caused an audible gasp from each member on the committee. Since the entire state is going to get blanketed by 24.36 feet of snow starting tonight, you might as well site back and read it all.
Not only do we have quantity, we have quality. There's plenty of news about the budget, but we also are cited five times (links with a *) — four on our new Internet safety initiative with Enough is Enough, the Interfaith Center for Public Policy, the Office of the Attorney General and Pastors For Family Values, three of which is video — and once on D.C.'s new same-sex marriage law.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Bill Howell (R-28, Stafford) has cut some staff and perks from the House of Delegates — no more free coffee, boys and girls. He said he's saved the Commonwealth $4.8 million since 2003 with a series of reductions, including new scheduling which allows members to travel to Richmond one day during for multiple out-of-session committee meetings rather than two or three separate occasions.
At the federal level, Senator Jim Webb (contact) penned a column in the Harrisonburg Daily News-Record saying that he hasn't made up his mind on the health care bill. Perhaps Virginians can help him conclude in the negative? The Wall Street Journal examines the Democrats' pending electoral implosion due to Americans' desire for the government not to own every industry and create new ones out of whole cloth. ("Climate change" and "green jobs"?)
But getting back to Governor Kaine's desire to eliminate the car tax cut and/or raise the state income tax by one percent: As mentioned here several times in recent weeks, he has a peculiar idea of a legacy, doesn't he? I know he's been out of state a lot in recent months, but didn't he see the election results? The people are demanding reductions in government, not more taxes. There's never been a governor more determined to inflict economic pain on Virginians than he — every year seeking a giant tax increase, despite a campaign pledge not to — and now, this monstrosity. The winner in all this is Governor-to-be Bob McDonnell. If he keeps his pledge not to raise taxes, and balances the budget, after Kaine has basically said that it can't be done that way, the new guy will pretty much own the state.
Kaine wants to scrap car-tax; increase state income tax (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
*Virginia takes Internet safety initiative to faith community (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
*D.C. City Council votes to legalize same-sex marriage (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Virginia panel hears about juvenile justice disparities, ‘sexting’ laws (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Kaine may renew Virginia's car tax debate amid budget gap (Washington Post)
Kaine seeks ways to increase revenues (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
McDonnell hints at job cuts for state employees (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
McDonnell, Bolling visit Southside, discuss job creation (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Transportation panel sees revenue as key to roads plan (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Va. seeks to extend IT contract deadline (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
No more free coffee, other House cuts (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
Delegates will give up some perks to save Va. some money (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Area legislators talk to Chamber of Commerce (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)
Virginia Republicans push Webb to oppose health bill (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Democrats' Blues Grow Deeper in New Poll (Wall Street Journal Online)
Health-Care Reform Needed Now (Jim Webb/Harrisonburg Daily News-Record)
*Interfaith Effort for Internet Safety (3:09) (WTVR.com/WTVR-CBS6)
*New Efforts to Promote Internet Safety (2:24) (NBC12.com/WWBT-NBC12)
*Promoting Internet Safety Through Religious Communities (3:26) (WHSV.com/WHSV-TV3)