Richmond, VA — The Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus is proud to announce the passage of a responsible and fair state budget that prioritizes the needs of Virginians today and for years to come. Our caucus took a stand against Governor Youngkin’s ill-advised, nearly $1 billion tax giveaway plan, which would have disproportionately benefited the rich and corporations while jeopardizing vital public services, including our public schools.

“Democrats fought tirelessly to preserve funding for crucial services such as public education, healthcare, mental health services, and affordable housing. We believe that a budget is a reflection of our values and priorities, and this budget gives our children the resources they need to succeed. Notably, this budget takes historic steps to end the state support cap that has led to the chronic underfunding of support staff in school divisions across Virginia.

A Fair Compromise on Taxes

In the spirit of compromise, we agreed to an increased state standard deduction—an additional $500 for single filers and $1,000 for joint filers, costing $48.1 million—which will help low and middle-income families throughout the Commonwealth.

The Republican Agenda to Defund Schools

It’s critical to address the misinformation regarding public school funding. The Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission (JLARC) report confirms that Virginia’s public schools are underfunded by a staggering $4 billion. This is not a coincidence; Republicans have been devaluing and underfunding public education for years.

Significant Increase in Teacher Pay

We understand that quality education is only possible with dedicated, well-compensated educators. We’re proud to report that Senate Democrats have provided a 12% raise over two years; 7% this year with an additional 2%. This is a clear indication of our continued commitment to supporting Virginia’s educators.

Governor Youngkin’s Risky Fiscal Policy

Governor Youngkin’s original budget proposal included nearly $1 billion in new, permanent, costly, and untargeted tax cuts that would have disproportionately benefited wealthy individuals and corporations. With the newly passed budget compromise, the Governor will receive only $96.2 million in permanent tax cuts, less than ten percent of his initial plan.

We have worked diligently to ensure a budget that aligns with the needs and values of all Virginians, not just the privileged few. The Senate Democratic Caucus will continue to fight for a Virginia that works for everyone and this is why it is important to make sure we maintain our Senate majority to have a seat at the table.”