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Nearly $200 million from Rainy Day Fund now in proposed 2017 budget
By Shauna Johnson, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Though he admitted he does not like taking nearly $200 million from West Virginia’s Rainy Day Fund to balance the state’s budget for 2017, House Speaker Tim Armstead (R-Kanawha, 48) sees that as the best option for lawmakers right now — nearly three weeks into a Special Session and less than a month ahead of the start of the new fiscal year....



Senate Finance Committee Chairman Mike Hall, R-Putnam, has cancelled this morning's committee meeting, which was going to take up a 1 percent increase in the sales tax.

"There's just several issues relative to the whole process. ... We thought we had a possible outcome that might be good," Hall said.

One issue is that Senate Minortiy Leader Jeff Kessler, D-Marshall, wants some Republican caucus support for the 1 percent sales tax...


'Long shot' 1% hike in the sales tax mulled
By Phil Kabler, The Charleston Gazette-Mail

With a state government shutdown looming a month away, West Virginia’s Senate Finance Committee spent Tuesday on a long-shot attempt to resurrect a 1 percent increase in the consumer sales tax.

“I don’t know if it’s a Hail Mary, but it’s definitely a long pass,” Senate Finance Chairman Mike Hall, R-Putnam, said of the efforts to bring back a bill (SB 1003) that was...


With tobacco tax up in smoke, Senate sets sights on sales tax increase
By Jeff Jenkins, WV MetroNews

The state Senate Finance Committee began working Tuesday on Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s bill to raise the Consumer Sales Tax by one percent in hopes of generating new revenue to fill a budget hole topping $200 million for next fiscal year.

Tuesday marked the 11th day of the special session on the budget. Senators earlier narrowly passed Tomblin’s 45-cent...


Family, friends mourn death of state superintendent's wife
By Jeff Jenkins, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The wife of West Virginia School Superintendent Dr. Michael Martirano died Tuesday morning.

State Department of Education Communications Director Kristin Anderson confirmed the death Tuesday afternoon.

“We are asking everyone to respect Dr. Martirano’s privacy and keep him and his family in their thoughts during this extremely difficult time...