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McDonnell hosts private breakfast with key legislators on budget

Anita Kumar

Gov. Bob McDonnell meets with House and Senate budget conferees for breakfast this morning at the Executive Mansion. (He's keeping the chef at his new home busy -- this is his second legislative breakfast this week.)

It will be the conferees' first get together with the new governor, who called it merely a "get-to-know-you meeting."

Of course, McDonnell knows the conferees pretty well already since he served with most of them in the General Assembly.

"I'm going to outline for them some of the things I think are important,'' McDonnell told reporters yesterday. "I want to tell them how I want to make myself available. I just want to basically tell the conferees that they have tough work -- creating another $2 billion in cuts and adjustments to the budget is going to be tough work on top of the $2 billion Gov. Kaine had already recommended -- and I want to be an ally, a resource."

Official meetings between House and Senate budgets conferees are open to the public, but this morning's meeting with the governor is not.

When asked if he would open up future meetings, McDonnell said "possibly." He said he would consult with the conferees and "think more about how and when" meetings would be open to the media.

McDonnell said they will get together as often as needed, but there will be no set schedule.

Senate conferees are Charles J. Colgan (D-Prince William), Richard L. Saslaw (D-Fairfax), R. Edward Houck (D-Spotsylvania), Janet D. Howell (D-Fairfax), William C. Wampler Jr. (R-Bristol) and Walter A. Stosch (R-Henrico).

House conferees are: Lacey E. Putney (I-Bedford), M. Kirkland "Kirk" Cox (R-Colonial Heights), Beverly J. Sherwood (R-Frederick), and Johnny S. Joannou (D-Portsmouth). House Speaker Bill Howell has yet to replace two conferees who left last year.

McDonnell said yesterday that he will submit a series of budget amendments to legislators starting this week .

Those amendments will include the spending proposals that he talked about Monday in his address to the General Address to create jobs and spur economic development as well as budget cuts to offset those proposals and a series of other cuts to make up for the remaining $4.2 shortfall.

By Anita Kumar  |  January 21, 2010; 7:30 AM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , General Assembly 2010 , House of Delegates , Robert F. McDonnell , State Senate  
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The secrecy begins.

Posted by: jckdoors | January 21, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

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