Virginia lawmakers wrap up session focused on budget

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Virginia state employees will be getting raises, some of them quite hefty, under a budget plan headed to Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s desk. The GOP-controlled General Assembly on Saturday passed a state spending plan that includes significant pay increases for state police and other law enforcement officers, as well as a 3 percent across-the-board raises for state employees and the state’s share of a 2 percent raises for teachers. Virginia lawmakers finished their work this weekend for the 2017 legislative session, a six week sprint that saw bipartisan cooperation on some issues like treating opioid addiction, but plenty of squabbles on social issues like abortion and gun issues.  Lawmakers also moved quickly to do Virginia’s part in establishing an independent oversight authority for the beleaguered Washington-area Metro system. They also grappled with how best to dispose of the leftover waste product that comes from burning coal.

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