Follow us:

Politics Northwest

The Seattle Times political team explores national, state and local politics.

March 20, 2013 at 12:20 PM

Good news, for once, from state revenue forecast

Budget writers got a rare dose of good news Wednesday. The latest tax-revenue projections show a net plus to the state’s bottom line.

A revenue forecast released Wednesday projects the state will take in $59 million more than expected in the current fiscal year and $19 million less over the next two years. Bottom line: Budget writers have an extra $40 million to work with.

Many legislators had privately expected a significant drop in projected revenue in part because of the automatic federal budget cuts, known as sequestration, that kicked in earlier this month, and the expiration of federal payroll tax cuts.

While the situation is better than expected, the Legislature still has a big problem –- an overall budget shortfall of up to $1.3 billion and a state Supreme Court mandate to increase education funding. Estimates peg the cost of meeting the Supreme Court ruling at anywhere from an additional $500 million to $1.7 billion over the next two years.

The mid-session revenue forecast typically kicks off the serious negotiations to balance the state budget. The GOP-led majority in the Senate is expected to produce a budget proposal first, followed by the House. Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee also is expected to weigh in with a proposal, but has not set a date.

Comments | More in Governor, Politics Northwest, State Legislature | Topics: gov. jay inslee, revenue forecast, Washington Legislature


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►