April 27, 2017

Act now to protect West Virginia's future



WV Governor Jim Justice has issued a call for a special session of the legislature to start on May 4 to work on the state budget. The governor seems confident that a deal is within reach, having told those attending a press conference that “I think we’re on a pathway to pass a budget that’s going to be really special,”

Of course things could be "special" in all kinds of ways. While I appreciate the governor's attempt to reach a deal with the Republican legislature, I hope he doesn't reach a "compromise" that would hurt working families while giving a tax cut to the wealthy and causing more serious fiscal problems down the road. You can read more on that here and here.

This is a time when revenue increases are needed to preserve the things we value most: schools, higher education, infrastructure, kids, seniors, veterans, parks, recreation, etc. That's one thing. But making the tax system more unfair to low income families while giving a break to the well off is just wrong.

As my friend Sean O'Leary from the WV Center on Budget and Policy recently tweeted, "If WV is going to increase taxes on working families, it should be for investing in schools, roads. Not to pay for tax cuts on the wealthy."

If the Republicans want to force the issue--and they have the votes--then so be it. Let them own it. All of it.

So what can you do about it? Several things, including:

*Call the governor's office and say something like, "Thank Gov. Justice for fighting for a budget that's good for all West Virginians. But please don't accept a compromise that hurts working West Virginians and makes our problems worse in the future."

*Contact your legislators. You can find out who they are here. The legislative website is here.

*Learn more by watching this Facebook Live presentation by Sean Monday, May 1 at 5:30.

*Show up at the capitol on Thursday, May 4 at 9:00 to stand up for The People's Budget.

Game on. And for real.