Does Virginia need tax cuts? The debate is heating up in Richmond
Members of the General Assembly are debating the need for tax cuts, and it's a conversation that is getting heated.
On the campaign trail, Glenn Youngkin said Virginia's economy was in the ditch. Now that he's governor he's using that argument to advocate a bunch of tax cuts – eliminating the grocery tax, doubling the standard deduction, delaying an increase in the gas tax.
Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw is skeptical. "Companies are lining up. Let me repeat this lining up to come to northern Virginia. Would they be doing that if we were taxing them out of existence? I mean give me a break," Saslaw said. "How do you explain that and the fact that virtually none of us here ever get emails saying, 'Oh geez you need to cut taxes.'"
At a meeting of the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday, Secretary of Finance Stephen Cummings said Virginia’s economy is not growing.
"We have to be able to explain why we are not growing then because I understand that people are not complaining right now that you're taxing me too much," Cummings said. "But why is it we're lagging all these other states? Why are we lagging the national average in our ability to grow our economy? There's got to be an explanation."
Some argue that Virginia did not get hit all that hard by the pandemic downturn, so the recovery is not going to be as robust as states that have a lot of ground to make up. Others say that the governor's proposed tax cuts are needed to jump start sluggish employment growth.