Friends and neighbors,
This week the Senate passed a supplemental operating budget that puts Washingtonians first and we’re working around the clock to pass some other heavy hitting legislation that gives back to working families.
We know Washington state is ranked #1 for the most regressive tax code in the nation and that it is disproportionately burdening our working families who in many cases are barely getting by.
This budget isn’t balanced on the back of the worker.
$350 million will strengthen our state’s groundbreaking paid family leave program to help families spend more precious time together.
$345 million to stabilize school districts that experienced enrollment declines because of the pandemic.
$172 million to add nurses and counselors to schools to help us better meet the physical and socio-emotional needs of students.
$100 million toward aggressively addressing workforce shortages and improving access to behavioral health services amongst our laborers.
$95 million is going toward increasing access to lifelines for people across the state and prioritizing childcare, behavioral health services, child visitation, and in-home care.
$75 million for the Farmers-to-Families Food Box Program to get fresh, healthy food to food banks across the state.
The legislature has an opportunity to build a supplemental budget that recognizes the sacrifices schools, businesses, and communities have had to make the last two years. With smart planning over these last few tough years, we’ve yielded a $6B dollar 2-year surplus that allows us the give back to Washingtonians. We achieved this through hard work and determination, and by leveraging one-time federal funds that allowed us to maximize our investments.
Some of these numbers may change as the final budget is negotiated with the House over the coming weeks.
Honored to Serve,
P.S. Save the date! We’re hosting another Virtual Town Hall on March 15th, at 6pm Pacific. We’ll release more information closer to the date. Make sure you don’t miss the opportunity to ask your questions live by Liking and Following my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/SenKuderer