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Governor McDonnell Talks Budget Cuts To Avoid Raising Taxes

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By Matt McCleskey

Lawmakers in Virginia still need to trim $2 billion from the state budget to avoid raising taxes. Governor Bob McDonnell says that means cuts to education and health care spending, among other measures.

Speaking this morning on WAMU 88.5, McDonnell said he's working with the general assembly to determine where the next round of cuts will come. He didn't give specifics but said at least some will be from K-12 and higher education and from health care through Medicaid, since they make up much of the budget.

"It's just a mathematical reality that to adjust $2 billion in the budget there has to be some adjustments in those areas," he said.

McDonnell says while job creation to boost the tax base is one of his long term goals, in the short term he wouldn't rule out more layoffs of state employees. He did say given already high unemployment, layoffs are a last option, with other things like furloughs a possible first.

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