We were able to accomplish a lot during this year’s short, 60-day session. In addition to passing a wide range of bills improving the quality of life in our communities, we finished on time and passed operating, construction and transportation budgets.
The operating budget provides $391 million in property tax relief, while fully funding K-12 education. It also directs funding to mental health care and college financial aid. Notably, it doesn’t raise or add any new taxes.
The construction budget includes funding to open a Teen Café in Issaquah – where teens can gather to explore creative interests in a safe place and access counseling and mental health services – and to build a playground in Maple Valley’s Summit Park.
It also contains funding to further improve Lake Sammamish State Park, help Eastside Fire & Rescue remove industrial chemicals from our groundwater, and expand and enhance Sandy Cove Park in historic Snoqualmie.
That all comes on top of a larger $4.2 billion construction package approved in January that included funding for projects in every community in the 5th Legislative District.
The transportation budget includes funding for design work so we can get reasonable cost estimates to widen S.R. 18 to four lanes from Issaquah-Hobart Rd to I-90.
Moving forward, Gov. Inslee has already signed two of my bills: one banning credit freeze fees (SB 6018) and another creating an easier system for the State Treasurer to replace lost checks (SB 6311). Five others are still awaiting his signature. I’ll have a full report on them for you in the coming weeks.
All my best,