CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WTAP) - The past 2 years have meant tough decisions for West Virginia lawmakers, but they expect 2018 to be very different.
Legislators predict with the improving economy and tax collections, next year's budget will be passed before the 2-month legislative session, which begins in 2 weeks, ends in mid-March.
One local lawmaker expects things to look up, partly because of the road bond issue voters approved this past fall.
"The forecasted dollars that are going to come in from the Roads to Prosperity projects, and the increases in severance taxes we're going to get from oil and natural gas, and there's going to be some addition from coal as well. We've opened up 30 coal mines back in the state this year."
West Virginia Senate President Mitch Carmichael says legislators will also consider measures to advance natural gas drilling, cut business inventory taxes, and provide free community and technical college to West Virginians.