RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — On Saturday, March 13, the General Assembly adjourned without passing a budget, ending their first session of 2022 without adopting a tax and spending plan for the year.
Because delegates and senators are only part-time legislators, there isn’t another regular session scheduled until next year – so will the state have to go without a budget?
Not quite. Special sessions are frequently called to address important business that comes up between regular sessions – and the General Assembly has held at least one special session every year since 2018.
While the regular session is over, Governor Glenn Youngkin is expected to call a special session after a few days break to hammer out a final compromise budget.
Senator Jennifer McClellan (D – Richmond) emphasized the need to preserve funding for schools in any budget compromise, “As a Richmond Public Schools parent, I will be working to ensure our budget funds our K-12 needs, investing in school construction and providing resources to schools to address the impacts of COVID and mental health.”
House Republicans issued a statement Saturday evening placing the blame for the budget delay on Democrats for adjourning on the planned date instead of extending the session.
“Unfortunately, the Democrats who run the Senate decided to put their own partisan angst ahead of Virginia’s common good and not just block many common-sense bills, but also leave Richmond before the work was done,” said Speaker Todd Gilbert (R – Shenandoah).
Governor Glenn Youngkin took a more conciliatory tone, calling on both parties to “work quickly.”
“Virginians are ready and together we can deliver for them all,” he said.
The date for the special session has not yet been announced, but it will likely be set within the next week.