Articles by Ross


Important Bills

The Legislature is a cyclical activity. We go through a phase where everyone creates proposed new laws and files them. This is call “dropping” bills, because you drop the signed pieces of paper into a basket called the “hopper.” The bills are heard in committee, and the ones that are…


Education Financing Update

For the entire 6 years I’ve been in the legislature I’ve worked on school funding. I’ve tried to improve the amount and the efficacy of use of the money. This year a bipartisan group of six legislators introduced a package of reforms coming from the Basic Education Financing Task Force…


Local Government Financing Plan

Final Report of the Washington State Local Governance Study Commission. …the underlying structural problem for King County budgeting is the mismatch between tax base and service costs in the unincorporated areas. The solution to this, which is encouraged by the Growth Management Act, is to ensure that the remaining unincorporated…


Open Letter to Teachers about HB 1410

I’ve had a lot of questions from teachers on HB 1410 that seem to indicate some misunderstanding of our intent and I believe a misreading of the bill. 1410 is a serious attempt to address school funding inadequacies and the structural problems that have built up over 30 years since…



February Revenue Collections Report

We got more bad news on the economy last week – another $63 million decline in the collections data. This was the month of Dec 10 – Jan 10, a very important period in our retail sales data.  Our total decline for the 2nd quarter of fiscal year 2009 (Oct,…


WACOPS Legislator of the Year

For some reason the Washington Council of Police and Sheriffs has named me their “legislator of the year.” I’m always happy to be recognized for the work I do, and these guys are an important part of the fabric of our community. I’m receiving the award from Mike Pentony and…


The News Tribune covers Basic Ed plan

Peter Callaghan wrote about our tremendous hearing in the House yesterday. We had 120 people testify, of whom only 13 were opposed. The most amusing juxtaposition was when a panel of 4 superintendents delivered a letter from all 35 school district superintendents in the Puget Sound region endorsing the bill…