By Peter Granitz
The Virginia House of Delegates is proposing huge cuts to education. Some lawmakers are blasting the plan, saying it will unfairly affect Northern Virginia.
Virginia is facing a $4 billion budget shortfall. The General Assembly is constitutionally required to submit a balanced budget, so it needs to make substantial cuts to nearly every program.
Arlington Democratic Delegate Bob Brink says some of the cuts, like $600 million from education, are too extreme. He says a state program compensates Northern Virginia schools for the higher costs of living.
"And the budget would cut that by over a third. I think that's bad for Arlington and Northern Virginia. It sends the wrong message about our priorities and it could do damage to our schools and their budgets," says Brink.
Brink says there is only one promising piece of the budget: that this is the first step. The Senate Finance Committee also presented a budget Sunday. The General Assembly needs to meld the two and present them to the governor by March 13.