On Thursday, Feb. 10, Delegate Lacey E. Putney (I-Bedford), Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, opened House debate on HB 1500, amendments to the Fiscal Year 2011-2012 State Budget with these remarks.

Highlights of the House budget amendments include the following key provisions that underscore the House’s fiscally responsible approach to state finances:

  • Dedicates $112 million (made available from the Governor’s mid-Session revenue reforecast increase) to eliminate the Accelerated Sales Tax for 98% of businesses currently subjected to it.
  • Makes an additional $64 million deposit — for a total of $114 million — into the state’s “Rainy Day” Fund Reserve, ensuring that 50% of the amounts due in the next biennium are set aside.
  • Reduces the amount of previously authorized debt by nearly $120 million.
  • Reduces fees on businesses by approximately $5.7 million.
  • Increases next fiscal year’s contributions to the state employee retirement plans (Virginia Retirement System) by more than $120 million.?

Review the House Appropriations Committee staff presentation (PDF) on amendments up for a vote.