Business Owners React to Budget Problems

By: Tim Saunders
By: Tim Saunders

Charlie Obaugh is expanding his successful car dealership in Staunton. He's able to make this investment thanks to strong sales and that's something he's worried about loosing if legislators don't get their act together on the state budget.

"They need to get together and they need to compromise," says Obaugh.

Aside from hurting consumer confidence, some say going without a budget is also a bad way to attract new companies.

"The senate and the house not being able to come together, I think it can get somewhat embarrassing for other businesses if they're thinking about locating in Virginia," says Keith May, a realtor with Kline/May Realty.

May says the valley's economy is strong, but with no funding for schools, tourism, and a host of others that keep the state afloat, business leaders are worried they too will take a hit.

"I'd hate to have their job. That's why I'm standin' here instead of down there in Richmond," says Obaugh. "I feel sorry for them, but they've got a job to do and they need to do it."

House Republicans are currently proposing a bill that would act as a temporary budget, extending money from the current budget through June 30, 2005. This was submitted to allow local governments to meet local deadlines for drafting their budgets.


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