Warnick says Senate budget proposal is best path forward for state

Sen. Judy Warnick said the Senate Majority Coalition’s budget proposal is the best path forward for Washington State. The budget makes education the top priority and delivers tax relief and college affordability to families across Washington without raising taxes. Senate budget leaders released their 2015-17 state operating budget proposal today with a pledge to capture savings and keep the state’s economy moving with more investments in education.

“Our state has $3 billion available for state government operations over the next two years, without new taxes. I have been adamant that $3 billion was more than enough to handle the demands facing the state and this budget shows that,” said Warnick

Warnick, R-Moses Lake, noted the Senate’s 2015-17 spending proposal would put more money into funding education – at a 3 to 1 ratio with new money — add mental-health services, as directed by the state Supreme Court, and cut college tuition by 25 percent all without raising taxes on working families and small businesses.

Warnick said the Senate proposal is clearly the best path forward when compared to the House majority’s plan, which would raise state spending by 15 percent and require a $1.5 billion in tax increases.

“I’ve tried to put our state budget in the context of what families across our state are doing. They prioritize. A family or small business that had an increase of over 8 percent would be thrilled. That is the situation we are in.  That’s not enough for the leaders of the House majority however. Their approach is saying 3 billion dollars isn’t enough – they want much more,” Warnick said.

Warnick believes the people she serves in the 13th Legislative District will see the Senate budget as a better way to move the state forward: protecting vital services, family budgets and taxpayers.

“We’ve been able to balance the budget without raising taxes because we had the courage to stick to our priorities and live within our means. Special interests that feed off government may prefer the House majority’s budget, but those aren’t the people I’m here to represent.”

Budget negotiators need to reach agreement no later than Sunday, April 26 for the Legislature to conclude its 105-day session on schedule.