The House capital budget would put a record $1 billion into school construction. Here, workers use Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) to build classrooms at Adams Elementary. Photo courtesy of Susan Jones.

The state construction budget puts a record $1 billion into school construction. Here, workers use Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) to build classrooms at Adams Elementary. Photo courtesy of Susan Jones.

OLYMPIA—The construction budget passed by the House and Senate will build a record $ 1 billion in new public schools and includes more than $46 million in local projects in the 24th District.

“This budget will put people to work from Aberdeen to Port Angeles, building local schools, parks and other vital projects,” said Rep. Steve Tharinger (D-Sequim), chair of the House Capital Budget Committee. “It’s great news for the people of Washington state, the hard-working folks in our construction trades and every student in our public schools and colleges.”

The budget breaks another record by investing more than $800 million in facilities at our community colleges and public universities.

“We pushed hard to boost education in timber and farm country,” said Rep. Mike Chapman (D-Port Angeles). “I’m so proud that the budget we’re sending to the governor’s desk puts every possible dime toward building schools and colleges so that every student, no matter where they live, has a chance to succeed in school and in life.”

The budget – Senate Bill 6090 – passed the House 95-1 and the Senate 49-0.

Other investments in education include:

  • $15.5 million to build Early Learning facilities
  • $30 million for rural and distressed K-12 schools
  • $800 million for state colleges and universities, with $433 million for community and technical colleges
  • $15 million for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) grants at K-12 schools

Investment in rural parts of Washington include:

  • $203 million for the Public Works Assistance Program, which helps local governments build critical infrastructure such as water and stormwater projects, roads and bridges
  • $80 million for Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP)
  • $5 million to bring broadband to timber and farm country
  • $18 million for forest health and wildfire prevention, a vital need given that the state has spent hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars in recent years to fight wildfires
  • $54 million for state parks
  • $160 million for Clean Drinking Water and Centennial Clean Water programs
  • $40 million for Stormwater Financial Assistance

In cooperation with new investments in the House operating budget, the construction proposal would put $165 million toward fixing the state’s mental health crisis. That funding includes:

  • $76 million for community behavioral health capacity
  • $58 million for construction and renovation at state facilities
  • $24 million for supportive housing for the chronically mentally ill

Finally, the budget puts serious funding toward housing, clean energy, arts and dental care:

  • $105 million for the Housing Trust Fund
  • $65 million for clean energy, solar, and energy efficiency
  • $49 million for arts, building communities, and youth recreation programs
  • $14 million for dental capacity and residency

Sidebar: List of 24th District construction projects

Sage Arts and Education Building–$1,270,000

Port Angeles Boys and Girls Club–$1,000,000

Captain Joseph House–$225,000

Chimicum Ridge Forest Pilot–$3,400,000

Coastal Harvest Roof Replacement–$206,000

East Grays Harbor Fiber Project–$463,000

Hoquiam Library–$250,000

Jefferson Healthcare Dental Clinic–$1,000,000

Port Angeles Dental Clinic–$610,000

Thurston County PUD construction loans–$1,028,000

Clallam Bay Corrections Center boiler replacement–$1,000,000

Clallam Bay Corrections Center culvert replacement and road resurfacing–$1,100,000

Clallam Bay Corrections Center minor works–$1,536,000

Sound Experience–$394,000

NW School of Wooden Boat Building–$360,000

Polson Park and Museum–$41,000

Fort Worden–$750,000

Floodplains by Design–$2,356,000

Water Irrigation Efficiencies Program–$1,000,000

Integrated Planning Grant: Port Townsend–$200,000

Leaking Tank Model Remedies – Frank McPhee Property–$20,000

Leaking Tank Model Remedies – RJ Hopkins Lodging–$20,000

Fort Flagler State Park – WW1 historic facilities preservation–$3,217,000

Fort Worden State Park – Pier & Marine Learning Center–$697,000

Fort Worden State Park – replace failing sewer lines–$2,204,000

Fort Worden State Park – replace failing water lines–$358,000

Ocean City State Park – replace non-compliant comfort stations–$1,526,000

Serendipity Farm preservation–$107,000

Smith Family Farm preservation–$524,000

Crowberry Bog natural area–$1,572,000

Clearwater riparian protection–$877,000

Leland Lake public access–$325,000

Dabob Bay Natural Area–$99,000

Spruce Railroad Trail–$649,000

Fish passage barrier removal – Johnson Creek–$3,008,000

Fish passage barrier removal – Johnson Creek Tributary–$1,022,000

Washington Coastal Restoration Initiative (four projects)–$4,402,000

School construction – east Grays Harbor transportation facility–$3,234,000

Dungeness Hatchery – replace main intake–$615,000

Fish hatcheries minor works–$250,000

Fish hatcheries preservation–$1,140,000

Snow Creek fish hatchery facility reconstruction–$100,000

Repairs and maintenance at Peninsula College–$1,179,000

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