Virginia’s general fund ends FY with $5.1 billion excess

Governor Glenn Youngkin announced yesterday that Virginia’s general fund revenues for the 2023 fiscal year were $3 billion over the official revenue forecast.

This leaves the commonwealth with $5.1 billion in excess resources for the year.

Revenue was expected to decrease this year by 14% but it actually declined by just 3.5%.

Based on preliminary data, sales tax collections, payroll withholding, and corporate income tax collections all grew despite official estimates predicting a decline.

In the Governor’s announcement, he said, “Virginians remain overtaxed. Last year we provided $4 billion of tax relief for individuals, families, and veterans… There is plenty of money in the system to fund our shared priorities of education, behavioral health, and law enforcement while returning more of Virginians’ hard earned dollars back to their wallets.”

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Walmart reaches opioid settlement with VA and nation

Attorney General Jason Miyares announced Friday that his office has reached a settlement with Walmart.

The settlement came after allegations that the company contributed to the opioid addiction crisis by failing to appropriately oversee the dispensing of opioids at its stores.

The settlement will provide more than $3 billion nationally and approximately $60 million to Virginia.

It will also require significant improvements on how Walmart’s pharmacies handle opioids.

State attorneys general on the executive committee, attorneys representing local governments, and Walmart have agreed to this settlement, and it is now being sent to other states for review and approval.

“Companies who facilitated the dispensing of opioids contributed to the opioid epidemic that has devastated millions of lives. This significant settlement will help us fight back against the epidemic and provide abatement and rehabilitation resources to suffering Virginians,” said Attorney General Jason Miyares.

The settlement will include:

• $3.1 billion to be divided by states that sign on, local governments, and tribes, for abatement and remediation of the opioid crisis, including treatment and recovery services to people struggling with opioid use disorder.

• Broad, court-ordered requirements, including robust oversight to prevent fraudulent prescriptions and flag suspicious prescriptions.

The parties are optimistic that the settlement will gain support of the required 43 states by the end of 2022.

That will allow local governments to join the deal during the first quarter of 2023.

Further details about the distribution of the money are forthcoming.

Last month, states confirmed that promising negotiations were also underway with Walgreens and CVS.

The parties continue their efforts to achieve those agreements.

Read the agreement and term sheet here.

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