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McDonnell Stresses Small Government, Transportation Needs

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Addressing the Virginia General Assembly, Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell said that Virginia is doing a better job of promoting economic growth and reigning in spending than most other states, but still has serious work ahead.

He urged lawmakers to support his plan to borrow $3 billion for transportation projects while interest rates and construction costs are low.

"Every major business and transportation group in our state has endorsed this plan," McDonnell said in his State of the Commonwealth address. "I'm asking you to do so as well."

Fairfax County Supervisor Jeff McKay, a Democrat, says the governor's proposals just scratch the surface of the state's funding problems.

McKay is still calling for the governor to hold a special session dedicated to transportation funding, something the governor said he would do last year.

"I don't see how you come up with a longterm, sustainable transportation solution without giving it the time and thought that the people in the Commonwealth deserve," McKay says.

In his speech, the governor called for state workers to start paying 5 percent of their retirement plans to inject money into the state's pension system.

He says the state's retirement system faces a $17 billion shortfall, and Virginia is one of only four states that currently foots the entire retirement bill for employees.


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