Legislature Faces Big Divides in Special Session

The Washington Legislature will begin a 30-day special session Wednesday to negotiate a 2015-2017 budget. Even as legislators try to resolve their differences on the budget for general state spending, they also face big financial issues in negotiations on a massive package of transportation construction and improvement projects.

House Proposal: Expand State Budget to Meet Needs of Real People

WASHINGTON’S economy is getting back on track. After years of struggle, it’s time to reinvest in our future. The state House has proposed a responsible budget that invests the public’s hard-earned tax dollars wisely in vital services for children and families.

Senate Budget Proposal: State Must Live Within Its Means

Our main objective when writing this budget was not to spend a specific dollar amount nor increase taxes — it was to provide the services people expect and deserve from state government without calling on families and businesses to send Olympia more money. When the state is collecting $37 billion over the next two years — that’s $3 billion more than the current budget — citizens expect us to govern with what we have.

WSLC: As Sine Die Nears, Values-Based Operating Budget Comes First

It is clear to us that we need more revenue to adequately fund an operating budget that takes care of our state’s needs and the workers who provide these essential services. There are a number of revenue options on the table — capital gains, B&O tax reform, closing tax loopholes, and a carbon fee — to name just a few.

Overtime: Washington Legislature Going Into Special Session

The House’s budget chair said Tuesday Washington lawmakers will not finish their work by Sunday’s deadline and will need a special session to work out the details on the state budget and adequately paying for public education. Gov. Jay Inslee agreed with Rep. Ross Hunter’s assessment.

9 charts that explain taxes in America

Payroll taxes — taxes on wages for Social Security and Medicare — account for almost as much tax revenue as the individual income tax does. Some payroll taxes are typically paid by employers, but economists agree they end up coming out of money employees would have earned.

State’s Tax Freedom Day Later Than Most

Our state will be the 41st in the nation to reach its Tax Freedom Day this year. That puts us among the nation’s top 10 highest-taxed states, along with New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Illinois, Minnesota and California.

State Treasurer Calls for Income Tax to Help Fund Education

Among other things, the McIntire plan would institute a 5 percent personal-income tax with some exemptions, eliminate the state property tax and reduce business taxes. McIntire argued that an overhaul is necessary because the state’s current tax structure has caused the tax base to shrink over the past few decades. A Constitutional amendment would also establish a three-fifths majority-vote requirement in the Legislature to change taxes.