Center's Report Says Tax Cuts Responsible for Budget Deficit
Charleston Gazette-Mail - When state budget officers put together the state's six-year budget forecast in 2012, they projected the state would have a general revenue budget of $5.29 billion in the coming budget year. Read
However, because of tax cuts and a sagging economy, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's proposed 2016-17 budget is $600 million smaller than those projections, an annual analysis by the West Virginia Center for Budget and Policy concludes.
"This is the fourth year in a row of very large budget gaps, which reflects that the state has a real revenue problem, exacerbated by the deep tax cuts put in since 2007," said Ted Boettner, the center's executive director and co-author of the report, "Confronting the Fiscal Gap."
Released Tuesday, the report shows that a combination of tax cuts and a weak economy have conspired to create budget shortfalls of more than $360 million in the current budget year, and a projected $466 million deficit for the coming 2017-18 budget year.