VIRGINIA BEACH - Governor Bob McDonnell is stopping in three Southside Hampton Roads cities Tuesday and touring businesses as part of his "Commonwealth of Opportunity" tour.
He toured Sugar Plum Bakery in Virginia Beach, will make a business announcement at Perdue Farms in Chesapeake and speak at the Portsmouth campus of Tidewater Community College about his latest efforts to restore rights to some convicted felons.
McDonnell's visit comes just weeks after he publicly apologized for accepting lavish gifts and cash from a political campaign donor. The controversy prompted state and federal investigations.
McDonnell on Monday told the Associated Press he has completed returning gifts from Star Scientific's chief executive, Jonnie Williams. The governor already repaid loans valued at nearly $125,000, and two of his daughters have returned gifts of $10,000 and $15,000 Williams gave them for their weddings.
The Associated Press reported McDonnell is using the Opportunity tour to tout the additional money the state is adding to its rainy day fund. McDonnell said the fund will grow to nearly $1 billion thanks to additional money from this year's budget surplus.
The seven-day tour will visit 22 cities across the state. His office says the tour highlights Virginia's successes over the past three and a half years including a falling unemployment rate, rebounding shellfish industry, transportation breakthroughs, open space conservation achievements, increased agricultural exports, and educational innovations to benefit Virginia's students, teachers and parents.