December 11, 2014
The Appropriations Committee is responsible for writing the two-year state operating budget, which pays for general government expenditures like teacher salaries, health care services, prison operations, and the higher education system. It also handles global fiscal issues such as pension policy as well as bills with significant fiscal impacts.
“We have a difficult challenge ahead of us,” said Hunter. “Education funding will be our top priority this session, but it’s not our only obligation. We have other responsibilities to communities like mental health, seniors and low-income families, and foster kids that we cannot put off any longer. We need to ensure that we deal responsibly with long-term obligations like pensions and bond payments, and we need to invest in efficiency improvements in our IT infrastructure.
“An all-cuts budget like the ones we passed the last three cycles will not lead to a more prosperous Washington. I look forward to working with the other members of the House, Senator Hill, and Governor Inslee to find bipartisan, fiscally responsible solutions to our budget challenges that preserve our values and ensure all Washingtonians have opportunities to succeed.”
The 105-day 2015 session of the Legislature opens January 12 in Olympia.
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Rep. Ross Hunter, chair of the House Appropriations Committee
Credit: Washington State LSS