Gov. McDonnell stance on surplus ruled "mostly true"

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Times have been tough for state budgets across the country. Governor Bob McDonnell has been trying to build the case that things in Virginia are getting better.

This is what he told NBC12 from Beijing, China, last month:

"Virginia is doing very well, that is why we are headed toward another surplus this year, unlike most states," he said.

The governor makes two claims here. 1) that Virginia is headed to a surplus; and 2) that most other states aren't.

According to the reporters of Politifact Virginia that statement is "mostly true."

In terms of raw money, Virginia through the first 10 months of the fiscal year is on track to take in $150 million more dollars than it spends. But that is only a one year snapshot.

It doesn't take into account federal stimulus funds and pension payments that have been deferred to future budgets. But what about all those other states?

According to the national conference of state legislatures, some states will indeed fall short of being able to end the year with a surplus.

But more than 20 are exceeding their financial expectations.

Taking all those factors into account, Jacob Geiger says McDonnell's claim is "mostly true."

"The state has had to make big cuts to balance the budget in past years, this surplus and last year's surplus don't totally make up for those cuts and don't make up for the other things like stimulus money that have helped the state balance the books," said Jacob Geiger of the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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