W.Va. Senate passes Future Fund bill unanimously

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The Associated Press

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The state Senate voted 34-0 to pass a bill to invest a portion of West Virginia's oil and natural gas revenues for future infrastructure and economic development.

There was no discussion before the unanimous vote. 

The Future Fund Bill would set aside 25 percent of severance tax revenues above and beyond a $175 million benchmark. The fund would be allowed to gather interest for six years before being used to pave roads and increase teacher salaries.

Senate President Jeff Kessler said he anticipates the Future Fund would help leverage money from an increasing oil and natural gas market in West Virginia.

He said if a similar investment had been created in 1975, it would be yielding an estimated $800 million in interest each year.

The bill now goes to the state House of Delegates.