Chandler releases statement on Governor Inslee’s supplemental budget proposal

'We find it disappointing that Governor Inslee has decided to trot out four tax increases we've all seen before,' says Chandler

Rep. Bruce Chandler, R-Granger, and ranking Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement today after Gov. Jay Inslee released his 2016 supplemental budget proposal:

“The governor is required to introduce his ideas for state spending before the Legislature convenes each year. We thank Governor Inslee for his proposal and for his staff's efforts in providing a starting point from which the Legislature can begin its work.

“At first glance, we're pleased to see emergency money allocated for fire suppression efforts across the state. While we may not agree on the cause of this year's horrendous forest fires, we certainly agree on the need to allocate adequate resources to fire suppression now, and in the future we believe there is ample opportunity to restore forest health and develop more effective state and local fire response strategies.

“We agree with the governor that a supplemental budget year is not the time for substantial policy changes that balloon state spending down the road. The 2015-17 biennial budget was signed into law less than six months ago. Significant policy additions – outside of emergency caseload adjustments – are better suited for the deliberation and scrutiny of a 105-day session during budget-writing years.

“However, in his proposal for additional policy changes, we find it disappointing that Governor Inslee has decided to trot out four tax increases we've all seen before. These tax increases have either been rejected by voters in the past, like the tax on bottled water, or already reviewed by the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee. The Legislature had ample opportunity to impose these new tax increases over the last few years, but after citizen input and careful scrutiny, chose not to. If the governor felt it was an emergency to add further growth to state government, the public would be better served by innovation and new ideas rather than a continuation of failed efforts of taking more from taxpayers.

“We're also disappointed that Governor Inslee failed to make a strong commitment to public charter schools in our state. During today's press conference, he had the opportunity to lend his support to bipartisan legislative efforts to ensure all students and parents of our state are served equally. Legislators will invest precious time and political capital in crafting a solution to our state's voter-approved public charter school system. However, without the engagement of our governor in those efforts, the solution will be more difficult.

“We look forward to further discussions with the governor and the other caucuses to arrive at timely, common sense solutions so that the 2016 session can end on time.”

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov