House Republican budget leader says $1.2 billion in new spending is unsustainable

The Washington State House of Representatives passed a supplemental budget today that increases state spending by $1.2 billion in the 2017-19 budget cycle and another $600 million in 2019-21.

House Republican budget leader, Rep. Bruce Chandler, R-Granger, called it “unsustainable” and released the following statement:

“This budget is better than where we started, thanks to House Republicans offering constructive amendments and standing strong against a carbon tax and capital gains income tax. However, it continues to grow state spending at an unsustainable rate.

“It also relies on a significant budget gimmick to divert money away from the constitutionally protected Budget Stabilization Account, which would take a 60 percent vote of the Legislature. While this gimmick may not be against the law, it is certainly against the spirit of the law.

“This budget attempts to offer property tax relief, but is much too little, much too late. Homeowners outside the Puget Sound region will be lucky to see any meaningful reduction in property taxes. And, because another budget will be written and passed before the cut goes into effect, lawmakers can take back this money next year. We could have given homeowners around the state significant property tax relief this year had we passed Republican proposals early in the session.

“Last year, we passed a sustainable bipartisan budget that saw input from both sides of the aisle. This year, Republicans were locked out of the process and then asked to vote on a budget less than 24 hours after our members had a chance to read it.

“This is not how our citizens expect us to conduct business in Olympia.”


Washington State House Republican Communications