The Virginia Association of Counties is asking Senators locked in a stalemate over the state budget to "compromise" and get the job done.
"We are here today to deliver a message to the Senate of Virginia," said VACO executive director James Campbell Tuesday at a press conference. "Republicans, Democrats, Independents, all - the Senate of Virginia, do your job. A principle duty of the General Assembly is to abopt a state budget to appropriate the funds the state is going to spend over the next two years. Failure to do so leaves local governments in a lurch. Without the knowledge of state revenues we cannot adopt local budgets; we can award our teacher contracts for the next year; and things at the local level become very disorganized."
Localities began their budget planning process in March in order to complete their budgets in May. Without a spending plan from state lawmakers, localities do not know how much money they will be receiving from state coffers.
Campbell said this is a particular problem when it comes to teacher contracts which must be finalized May 1.
"We need that budget," Campbell said. "We have a statutory obligation to have our teacher contracts out by May 1. If we don't know how much money we are getting it's very, very difficult to do that."
With four days left in the 2012 General Assembly session Campbell said it's time for Senators to sit down and talk to get a spending plan in place.
"On behalf of the 95 counties here in Virginia, the 8 million people of Virginia, we are urging, urging the Senate to talk to each other, talk with each other," Campbell said. "We're urging them to compromise and adopt a budget. We're urging them to do their job."