House Appropriations Chair Timm Ormsby comments on Senate Republican budget proposal
“I knew the Senate Republican budget would be similar to President Trump’s irresponsible proposal, but I wasn’t prepared for the disturbing policy changes Senate Republicans are supporting.
“Although we’ve only had a short time to review their budget, the similarities are sadly striking. This might be President Trump’s and Olympia Republicans’ idea of compassion, but they aren’t Washington state’s values.
“House Democrats are finalizing our budget proposal this week. In the coming days we will introduce a budget that represents the values of this Washington by helping working families, fully funding K-12 schools, continuing to fix our mental health system, closing the opportunity gap, and supporting at-risk youth.”
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Senate Republican Budget Proposal Concerns
- Senate Republicans cut money for programs that help the poorest children in the state get ready for school (ECEAP) by limiting access. At the same time, they cut money for programs that improve early childhood education to make sure kids start school ready to learn.
- They lower the per-pupil funding amount even though they’re required to fully fund education.
- The Braun/Rossi budget plan also repeals voter-approved salary increases for teachers.
- Senate Republicans do nothing to expand access to higher education for low-income students.
- The Braun/Rossi budget eliminates funding for homelessness assistance for youth and our some of the most vulnerable in our state. ($100 million over four years)
Health Care & Mental Health:
- Senate Republicans turned down federal Medicaid money that would help people in urban AND rural areas keep their health care.
- By refusing to fund almost all state employee contracts, Senate Republicans restrict the ability to attract health care providers at Western State, putting employees and patients in danger.
Children, Youth and Families:
- The Braun/Rossi budget does not fund the proposed Department of Children, Youth and Families, designed to consolidate programs that help families in crisis. This landmark proposal not only helps those most in need, it also uses money more efficiently by bringing all such services under one roof.
- Senate Republicans make it more difficult for low-income workers to keep affordable childcare.
- Senate Republicans reduce Department of Corrections funding.
- They reduce the length of community supervision for many offenders, as well moving offenders and the resulting cost to county jails.
- Despite what they say, Senate Republicans increase property taxes by $5.5 billion over four years.
- Even while cutting hundreds of millions from vital services, Senate Republicans still create or extend a variety of tax breaks.
- Senate Republicans eliminate funding for numerous economic development programs in the Department of Commerce that help businesses grow and succeed.