Another government proposal for increasing state dollars for Washington public schools was dropped into the already overloaded cart Tuesday. The proposal from Senate Democrats gives lawmakers another option for answering a Supreme Court order to improve the way education is paid for. The court’s last communication with the Legislature asked for a concrete plan by April…More
Topic: state budget
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A new poll by Stuart Elway found that voter concern about the state budget and spending has dropped to its lowest level since the Great Recession hit. As it has since 2009, the economy remained the top priority for voters. The survey of 408 registered voters last week found that only 17 percent cited the state…More
For the first time in six years, the state Legislature won’t have a budget shortfall to fix when it goes into session next month. Multi-billion-dollar shortfalls, and corresponding fights over taxes and spending cuts, had seemingly become the norm after the Great Recession hit in 2008. This time, lawmakers could have some pocket change to spend. In his…More
Gov. Jay Inslee’s budget office released a memo this morning detailing potential impacts if there is a government shutdown. The Legislature has to pass a budget by the end of the month in order to avoid a shutdown, and there has been progress between Republicans and Democrats in recent days toward a deal. Some examples…More
UPDATE 5:00 P.M. | Adds information on memo from governor The prospect of a government shutdown has spurred many state agencies to start building a case for why they should remain open — including state treasurer’s office. This may be more important than you think, considering the treasurer’s office writes all the checks for the state. It…More
Barring a breakthrough in negotiations, the Legislature appears headed toward a special session to wrap up a state operating budget and possibly other bills. The GOP-led majority in the Senate maintains it’s possible to finish up by the last day of the 105-day regular session on Sunday. But Democratic budget writers and the governor’s office are…More
House Democrats today dropped a proposal to permanently extend a beer tax that’s due to expire this summer. They also killed proposals to eliminate a tax break for stevedoring, impose a sale tax on janitorial services and eliminate a tax exemption for insurance agents. Combined, the proposals would have raised around $165 million in additional tax…More
After years of talk, Congress is moving toward possibly ending a loophole that has prevented states from collecting sales taxes on many Internet purchases.
The U.S. Senate could vote this week to approve the Marketplace Fairness Act, which would end the longstanding tax advantage enjoyed by Internet retailers like Amazon.com over their brick-and-mortar competitors.
The proposal, which passed a test vote Monday in the Senate, would require companies with sales of more than $1 million to begin collecting sales and local taxes for purchases over the Internet.
That could mean a big windfall for the Washington state treasury – bringing in an additional $184 million for the 2013-15 budget, according to an estimate by the state Department of Revenue. That would rise to more than $567 million in 2015-17 as compliance ramps up, the state predicts. Cities and counties would also get a share – more than $278 million by 2015-17.
But lawmakers currently haggling over the state budget are not expecting that money to bail them out — at least in the short term.More
House Democrats set the high bar for state spending in a proposed budget released Wednesday that would raise roughly $1.3 billion in additional tax revenue and plow the same amount into K-12 education to comply with a state Supreme Court mandate.
Overall, the House proposal would spend about $34.5 billion. By comparison, Gov. Jay Inslee has proposed a $34.4 billion spending plan and Senate Republicans, $33.3 billion. The GOP budget is the only one that does not include additional money from taxes.
The House Democrats’ proposal is similar to Inslee’s in the mix of tax breaks it would close, including repealing tax exemptions for bottled water and the sales tax exemption for people living outside the state.More
Senate Democratic Leader Ed Murray says the budget being released today by the GOP-led majority has input from Democrats, but he does not consider it bipartisan. The majority caucus is expected to release its spending proposal at noon on Wednesday. Republicans have said they will meet state Supreme Court demands for more education funding and close…More