Dear Friends and Neighbors,
We've been extremely busy in Olympia. Another important deadline—house of origin cutoff—was last week. All bills not approved by the chamber in which they originated are now considered “dead.” The only exceptions are bills necessary to implement the budget. Lawmakers are now back at work in their respective committees hearing about bills approved by the opposite chamber.
Good revenue news!
This week our state got some really good revenue news! The Economic and Revenue Forecast Council released its state revenue forecast this week. State tax collections continue to be strong. Very strong. In fact, current state spending is now at $44.4 billion and forecasted available revenue for 2019-21 is $50.6 billion.
With this extraordinary state revenue growth, it's more important than ever we control state spending and pass budgets that are fiscally responsible. Simply put: we need to live within our means.
Early in the session—knowing state revenue was increasing—the governor proposed a more than 22 percent increase in state spending and $3.7 billion in new taxes. House Democrats plan on releasing their operating budget proposal next week. It also includes big tax increases.
We do not need to raise taxes! Olympia doesn't have a revenue problem, it has a spending problem. If anything, lawmakers should be looking at ways to return money to hardworking taxpayers.
Watch my legislative video on recent session deadlines, Latino Day at the state Capitol, and the state's revenue forecast.
Reminder! Town hall meetings will be held on Friday, March 22 and Saturday, March 23
Sen. Judy Warnick, R-Moses Lake, Rep. Tom Dent, R-Moses Lake, and I are hosting town hall meetings on Friday, March 22, and Saturday, March 23. Please consider attending and sharing your comments, concerns, and ideas about public policy issues important to our communities!
Date: Friday, March 22
Time: 5:00—7:00 p.m.
Where: Ellensburg City Hall, 501 N. Anderson
Date: Saturday, March 23
Time: 10:00—12:00 p.m.
Where: Lincoln County Courthouse, 450 Logan Street
*parking is located on the west side of the entrance on the lower level
Date: Saturday, March 23
Time: 3:00—5:00 p.m.
Where: Big Bend Community College, ATEC Building 1800, 7662 Chanute St. NE
If you have any questions, feel free to call my Olympia office at (360) 786-7808 or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for allowing to represent you in Olympia!