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State Adds $170M to 2018 Revenue Projection, Relies on Unpassed Bills

West Virginia Governor's Office
Secretary of the Department of Revenue Dave Hardy at a press conference on February 27, 2017.

State revenue officials have released new income projections for the 2018 fiscal year, but are basing those numbers largely on legislation that has yet to be approved by lawmakers during a special session.

Revenue Secretary Dave Hardy released the updated projections for the 2018 fiscal year Tuesday, increasing previous estimates by nearly $170 million.

Hardy said $40 million of the new revenue is thanks to legislative and executive action taken during the regular session, including ending some transfers of funds to the state’s workers compensation debt or increasing the wholesale price of liquor.

The other $129 million is the result of projected increased economic activity.

That activity is partially due to expected upticks in the coal and natural gas industries, but most of the revenue is estimated to come from the economic impact of the governor’s roads package.

That package includes increasing the wholesale prices of gasoline by 3.5 cents and hiking Division of Motor Vehicle fees to fund new road construction. The bills have not yet been approved by lawmakers during their current special budget session.

The Governor’s Office says if lawmakers choose to also pass a tax reform measure that is largely based on increasing the consumer sales tax and lowering the personal income tax, lawmakers would have an additional $183 million to use in the 2018 fiscal year.

Lawmakers have until June 30 to approve a budget bill to avoid a government shutdown. 

Editor's Note: This story has been updated to clarify the source of new revenue projected for the 2018 fiscal year.

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