Gov. Justice Proposes Revised Budget Plan to Close Deficit

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – Gov. Jim Justice has unveiled a revised budget plan to close the projected $500 million state deficit by raising taxes on sugary soft drinks and cigarettes, revising pension contributions and reducing previously proposed fractional sales and corporate tax hikes.

He’s still calling for major highway reconstruction to boost the state economy, funded by bonding seeded with revised taxes and fees. He says it would create 48,000 jobs.

Justice now would partly offset his proposed $20 increase in the annual fee for license plate vehicle stickers by reducing inspection frequency to every three years.

He would raise the West Virginia Turnpike toll by $2 while letting state residents buy an $8 pass and raise gas taxes by 4.5 cents a gallon, roughly half the 10 cents he proposed earlier.