Kaine: “We’ve done the best we can”
Governor Tim Kaine just wrapped up a lengthy press gaggle where he discussed the end of his final legislative session as the Virginia’s top elected official. As you might imagine, the discussion was centered around the budget.
Kaine said that this was the most difficult budget process Virginia has had to face in “many, many years”. He said he was happy that despite the challenges this budget presented that the final product turned out to be closest to the one he had originally submitted of any during his tenure.
The Governor gave the most credit to his friend in the White House Barack Obama. Kaine said that if not for the Obama stimulus plan, the state would be in much worse shape than it turned out to be. He quantified the $800 million used to fill holes in the budget plan but pointing to the impact it would have in just one area: state personnel. He said that without the cash, 7,100 state employees would’ve been laid off and he would have been force to institute furlough across the board.
Some of what the Governor had to say is after the jump.
When he talked about the challenges this budget presented, Kaine said that despite all that was thrown at them they were able to cut significant spending without civil unrest. The transcript and video of a portion of his remarks is below:
“I am proud that even though these discussions are hard even though they have caused some pain, we’ve take significant dollars out of this budget without citizen uprising and you know, huge problems. To my way of thinking, we’ve done the best we can to protect our core services.”