27th LD Update: Transportation Budget is Released & More

Dear friends and neighbors,

Earlier this week, the House Democrats  proposed the new transportation budget for the 2023-25 fiscal biennium, providing a spending authority of $13.6B. The budget reflects several new legislative priorities, as well as the need to address the fiscal realities relating to workforce challenges and inflation. Budget funds will be used to implement last year’s historic and transformative, Move Ahead Washington package (almost $17 billion) over a 16-year period, as well as projects from the 2015 Connecting Washington package ($16 billion investment), also over a 16-year period.

This budget funds:

  • Continuation of major highway projects, including SR 167 from Puyallup to the Port of Tacoma
  • Reducing carbon emissions as part of the Climate Commitment Act (CCA)
  • Improving traffic safety
  • Investing in Washington State Ferries

A press conference took place at 1:30 p.m. on Monday afternoon. Click here to watch it in its entirety or by clicking on the image below.

In a nutshell: Many projects were delayed several years, and it makes sense to not dismantle these project teams, but to keep the projects on schedule and we have the financial resources to do so. Our ferry system also has a lot of challenges in regard to worker recruitment, training and retention, not to mention the construction of new vessels. This year, the House Democrats and Republicans worked side-by-side on this budget. I believe there will be bipartisan support of the budget. It is up for Executive Session on Wednesday afternoon and is expected to be heard on the floor on Monday, April 3.

For a more in-depth look at what was discussed during this week’s press event, click here.

Video Update

A couple weeks ago, my seatmates, Speaker Laurie Jinkins, Sen. Yasmin Trudeau and I had a town hall. Did you miss it? No worries, the video below gives a recap of how it went. Plus, I also talk about why it’s essential to open our state’s ferry procurement process to national shipbuilders (HB 1846). Tune in and learn more!

Meet Legislative Pages Mac Brady and Ryan McDaniel

I recently sponsored two pages in the Washington State House of Representatives: Mac Brady and Ryan McDaniel.

Mac (above) is a student at Bellarmine Preparatory School and is the child of Joe and Brynn Brady of Tacoma. Ryan (below) is a student at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic School and is the child of Tim and Megan McDaniel of Tacoma.

Pages assume a wide variety of responsibilities, from presenting the flags to distributing amendments on the House floor. Pages support the efficient operation of the Legislature while also receiving daily civics instruction, drafting their own bills, and participating in mock committee hearings.

The legislative page program gives young Washington residents the chance to learn and participate in the legislative process. For more information, including how to apply, please visit the page program’s website by clicking here.

As a final note before I sign off, this year’s Legislative Session is over in less than a month! Sine die is April 23. You’ll be hearing from me again soon with an update on how this last push went. There’s still a lot to get done!


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