Tax Cuts: Truth & Consequences

The more than $750 million tax giveaway (mostly to the rich) passed by the Legislature hasn’t even hit our state’s budget, yet the majority party’s policies appear to be getting ready to keep their budget belt even more tightened. Why else would they totally ignore the many unmet needs of our state? 

The very first interim sessions in April took updated testimony that revealed that the Governor’s  declared state of emergency in the state’s jails and prisons (that the legislature extended during the session) has already gotten worse. Moreover, the situation with the National Guard filling in and regular guards doing double shifts forever is dangerous and not sustainable. I bet they still need the $20 million dollars of ‘lock repairs’ which were mentioned during the regular legislative session! It’s mind boggling… 

The cost to keep the Guard in our prisons has cost a reported $17 million so far. Wouldn’t it be cheaper (and safer) to just give our corrections officers the $10K annual raise that died in the House Finance Committee in March? 

Now we’re hearing that volunteer fire departments are broke and shutting down and there’s also an EMT shortage! No ‘surplus’ funds for them either! Make sure you get sick at a slow time so you won’t have to take a number and wait. 

I don’t know about you, but the two-lane road I drive 10 miles/day on has pothole patches inside pothole patches. And there are new ones growing everyday! Flat state budgets for the past five or six years have led to flat tires from hitting too many potholes. 

All these crises were ignored during the session so that all our “surplus” financial eggs could all be put into the tax cut basket to mostly benefit the wealthy, including our millionaire governor. Trickle-up economics at its worst.

Don’t think it’ll really be that bad? Then check out one of the WV Center on Budget and Policy’s community meetings called “More Money for Who?” on “how state tax changes undermine schools, libraries and healthcare,” to participate in an interactive discussion on how the recent tax changes can affect your public services.

Source: How Tax Cuts for the Rich Trumped Public Investments: The West Virginia Fiscal Year 2024 Budget, WV Center on Budget and Policy, April 2023,

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