Martinsville Bulletin, Inc.
P. O. Box 3711
204 Broad Street
Martinsville, Virginia 24115
Toll Free: 800-234-6575
Editorial: Governor right on 'local aid'
Sunday, December 23, 2012
It appears Gov. Bob McDonnell got the message sent by area governments and others about what is commonly called local aid to the commonwealth.
Last week, McDonnell proposed revisions to the state’s two-year budget. One of his amendments would eliminate the combined $45 million in state funds that Virginia cities and counties are slated to return to Richmond. Such paybacks are especially ludicrous considering the state is experiencing budget surpluses while many localities throughout Virginia are struggling.
If that amendment is not adopted, Henry County will have to give back $286,000 and Martinsville will return $171,000 in 2013. In all, Henry County will have given back more than $1.5 million and Martinsville will have returned more than $1 million from fiscal 2009 through the current fiscal year, figures provided by county and city finance department officials show.
After years of belt-tightening, it is an understatement that Henry County and Martinsville could put that money to good use.
We hope local officials and this area’s state legislators will convince members of the General Assembly to approve this amendment and let the state aid remain where it was intended, with the localities.