Gov. Justice announces best revenue year in West Virginia history; state has second-highest growth rate in America

CHARLESTON – Gov. Jim Justice announced today that revenue collections for this fiscal year have set an all-time West Virginia record and are among the very best for any state in the country.

“These numbers are really special,” Gov. Justice said. “This is my job and the numbers speak for themselves.”

West Virginia is on pace to reach about $500 million in revenue growth for this fiscal year alone, an all-time best for any single year in West Virginia history.

Additionally, over the first 10 months of FY2019, the general revenue growth rate came in at a staggering 11.5 percent. That ranks as the second-best growth rate, for any state, across the entire nation this year.

“Our growth rate in West Virginia – I keep saying it, in West Virginia – is the second-highest growth rate in the country,” Gov. Justice said. “I couldn’t be any prouder of that as a West Virginian.”

From FY2007 to FY2017 – the entire decade before Gov. Justice took office – revenue grew at an average of just 0.08 percent.

“I’m in the field every day, that’s what I do,” Gov. Justice said. “I am out as a laborer and it’s working. It’s working like it’s never worked before, ever.”

“In this year alone, we have gained $452.6 million of revenue, versus $314 million for ten years between 2007 and 2017,” Revenue Secretary Dave Hardy said. “That’s 150 percent, in one year, of what we did in ten years.

“West Virginia, in Fiscal Year 2019, has had, probably, the most extraordinary year in the history of this state,” Hardy said. “The numbers do not lie.”

According to the National Association of State Budget Officers, only five out of the 50 states across the country can boast double-digit revenue growth rates. West Virginia’s 11.5 percent is the second-best such rate in America.

This growth has come from many sources, chief among them being non-manufacturing exports, which rose from $1.5 billion when Gov. Justice first came into office to $3.9 billion in FY2019.

Total severance tax collections from all sources are up by more than $100 million this year with coal up by roughly $45 million, natural gas up $30 million and oil up more than $15 million. Since Gov. Justice first took office in January 2017, coal is up by more than $80 million, natural gas is up by nearly $90 million and oil is up $20 million.

Additionally, corporate net income tax is up $70 million, personal income tax is up $160 million, and sales tax is up $116 million – the greatest increase in sales tax in state history.

“This year will go down in history, no doubt about it,” Hardy said. “These numbers are absolutely historic and West Virginians should be very proud of what has been accomplished.”

Beginning from the time Gov. Justice took office and continuing through FY2022, West Virginia is now on-pace to generate $1.8 billion in NEW REVENUE over five years.

“I couldn’t be happier,” Gov. Justice said. “We’re getting better with leaps and bounds. 

“We’ve still got people to help and things to do,” Gov. Justice said. “We want to just keep moving.”

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