The Current | April 10, 2015

2015 legislative session • April 10, 2015 • Day 89 

The Current

Letter from Leadership 

Dear Friend:  

We are hitting the homestretch of the legislative session, which means a lot of House floor action and caucus meetings. Tuesday was fiscal committee cutoff -- opposite house. This means Senate bills in House fiscal committees had to pass out of these respective committees, unless they are necessary to implement the budget. Our next legislative deadline will be opposite house cutoff on April 15.

House transportation budget

The House passed a 2015-17 transportation budget Thursday. This is a budget we pass in odd-numbered years and make adjustments to in even-numbered years. It should not be mistaken for a transportation tax package, which has not come to the House floor yet. The chair of the House Transportation Committee recently said a package will not get a vote in the House until both chambers negotiate a final deal.

You can learn more about the vote and amendments we offered on the transportation budget below. 

Operating budget negotiations

The Senate passed its operating budget Monday. You can learn more about the proposal in this blog.

Budget-negotiating teams from the four corners have been assigned and met for the first time Thursday. The House Republican team will include our ranking members on the House Appropriations Committee, led by Rep. Bruce Chandler, and a few members of our Leadership team. We will also rely on the expertise of our ranking members on other committees. 

$1.5 billion in tax increases

The House Democrats' operating budget is built on $1.5 billion in tax increases, which would help increase state spending by 15 percent. However, the legislation (House Bill 2224) that would put these tax increases in place has yet to pass out of the House Finance Committee. We discussed this issue in our media availability event with the Senate Tuesday.

105 days 

Many state lawmakers will return home this weekend. It may be the last weekend we can spend with our families until early May. We are looking forward to the last 16 days of the legislative session and remain optimistic we can get done in 105 days. 

In your service,

Rep. Dan Kristiansen
House Republican Leader
39th District

Rep. Matt Manweller

Rep. Matt Manweller on taxing and spending in Olympia  

Did you know 120 out of 140 bills relating to tax incentives since 2005 were prime sponsored by Democrats? Curious about the results of the governor's LEAN management promises? Rep. Matt Manweller talks about these issues and more in this video.  

Rep. Ed Orcutt

2015-17 transportation budget passes House  

The House passed a 2015-17 transportation budget Thursday on a 78-19 vote. The proposal calls for $7.7 billion in spending, including $3.9 billion for capital projects, $2.3 billion for operating programs and $1.5 billion in debt service payments.

We offered 15 amendments to improve the bill, but only three were adopted. Three of our amendments that were rejected would have: 

  •  removed a $17 million appropriation that covers cost overruns for the Seattle Tunnel Project (learn more here);
  • limited the bonds bought through this transportation budget to only 15 years; and
  • eliminated the $3 million appropriation for a road user charge/vehicle miles traveled/pay as you go pilot project. 

Dead or alive? 

What bills are dead or alive in the legislative process? Find our updated list here.

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