Senate passes historic bipartisan budget

Bridges to a Better GovernmentLast Friday, the Senate adopted a bipartisan operating budget that would spend more on basic and higher education while addressing the needs of Washington’s most vulnerable citizens, all without raising taxes. The measure passed by a vote of 30-18. The $33.3 billion, two-year spending plan would increase state support for basic education by 11.1 percent, lower the high tax rates adopted three years ago, and leave $611 million in reserve, with much of that going into the state’s rainy-day fund. Click here to read more of the specifics of our proposal.

The fact is our state will be taking in more in taxes than any time in history. We can – and should – adopt a budget that balances without relying on tax increases. The Senate budget is much different from the governor’s proposal that relied on $1.2 billion in new taxes. And unlike the governor’s proposal which increases non-education spending by over seven percent, we limit it to under two percent.

It’s important to remember, however, that this budget proposal is not the final version. There will be changes made by the House, which must then be approved by the Senate. As with all proposals, it is a work in progress, but I view it as an excellent place from which to start negotiating a reasonable compromise with members of the House.

Below is a comparison of the Senate’s bipartisan budget proposal tp the House and Governor’s proposal:

House-Operating-Budget-Proposal-1

Click here to read the full Bridges update for April 12, 2013.