Greetings from Olympia,
The Legislature has finally adjourned for the year. That means I am looking forward to spending time back in district connecting with you to discuss the work we have done.
I am concerned about the state’s future. For the past five years, the Senate Republicans have put families first by fully funding basic education, adopting sustainable bipartisan budgets, and refraining from implementing new general tax increases.
In only a few months, the new Democratic majority in Olympia has seemingly returned us to out-of- control spending and disingenuous budget gimmicks. That is most apparent in the 2018 supplemental budget that jeopardizes future budgets and our state’s credit rating. Even with over $2 billion in unexpected revenue coming to the state, growing government was priority number one.
We have real obligations such as making our final payment toward fully funding basic education, and dealing with the 2018 property tax spike that resulted from the education-funding plan approved in 2017. We had the resources to do both, but the majority disagreed. Instead, they spent your tax dollars on pet projects and ignored state law by doing an end-run around the voter-approved rainy day fund, stealing $700 million. To add insult to injury, their plan to provide property tax relief to hurting families does not go far enough.
In the final hours of the legislative session, proposals were rammed through with little debate or notice, circumventing the legislative process. We had an opportunity at the beginning of the year to do right by taxpayers, stimulate job creation and invest in mental health – in fact, we had a budget proposal to do just that, but it was not accepted.