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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Gregoire calls Special session to deal with deficits

Rep. Cary Condotta filed this report

The governor has called a 30-day special session to begin Nov. 28 to address our state budget shortfall. When the Legislature convenes it is expected the shortfall will be close to $2 billion.

The Legislature continues to pass budgets that are unsustainable and not reflective of the economic situation in Washington state. It took 135 days before we could get a budget passed last May. Despite many of us claiming it was a short-term fix and felt it would not hold up given the sluggish recovery of our economy, the budget was passed into law.

In June, shortly after the governor signed the budget, the state revenue forecast showed our tax collections down significantly and the $700 million in reserves dropped to $163 million in about one month. Five months later we are being called back to address our budget situation.

We will have some difficult decisions. However, it is important to understand that while revenue projections are declining, we are still projected to bring in $2.1 billion more in this biennium.

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