Blog Posts > Statehouse Beat: Financial Trouble Ahead for WV
July 15, 2023

Statehouse Beat: Financial Trouble Ahead for WV

Charleston Gazette Mail

Gov. Jim Justice and company recently celebrated a record budget surplus for the just-ended 2022-23 budget year – although as Justice and Revenue Secretary Dave Hardy admitted, the surplus was wildly inflated by deliberately and significantly underestimating state revenue collections.

The surplus will likely trigger a second round of income tax cuts — but ominous economic signs are looming for the state.

Take severance tax collections, for example, which primarily are affected by production and price trends for natural gas and coal.

Read the full article here.

While severance taxes account for $64.79 million of that decline, the reality that June 2023 collections fell by a total of $79.97 million suggests that, as a West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy report notes, revenue collections were “very clearly trending downward in the second half of the (fiscal) year, even before 2023’s income tax cuts were enacted and implemented.”

In other words, we’ve effectively cut another $750 million out of already shrinking state revenue collections.

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