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by Brandon Jarvis

With a little more than a month left in his term as Virginia’s governor, Ralph Northam is doing a tour across the commonwealth to thank Virginians and announce that his outgoing budget proposal includes a 10% increase for teachers.

“Paying teachers is the right thing to do, and a wise investment,” Northam said in a press release. “Virginia has invested in teachers in a big way over these past four years, and now it’s time to do much more. Virginia’s strong economy has delivered booming revenues. What we’ve been doing these four years is working, and Virginia should continue it.”

Northam’s proposal will increase compensation 5 percent a year in each of the next two budget years, for a cumulative increase of 10.25 percent.

The proposal is largely symbolic with Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin taking the reigns of negotiating the budget with the General Assembly on Jan. 15. The session doesn’t begin until Jan. 13 and will now consist of a Democratic Senate and Republican House of Delegates.

Youngkin has vowed to also make a big investment in the education system that includes teacher raises; though some of his priorities differ from that of the Democrats. Youngkin wants to provide parents with more options for their kids to go to schools as well as invest in charter/innovation schools.

A source close to Youngkin provided Virginia Scope with a statement Monday afternoon. “Glenn’s entire Day One Game Plan is online if the Northam team wants to crib any other ideas to help Virginians or turn around Virginia’s economy.”

This is a comment that is familiar to ones being made by Republicans recently as Virginia Democrats have been coming around to increasing the standard tax deduction and eliminating the grocery tax after Youngkin ran on both ideas.

Either way, it looks like both parties agree that teachers deserve a raise. Whether they follow through, or not, is yet to be seen.

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By vascope