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Revenue drop blows up budget writers’ schedule

Post by Jordan Schrader / The News Tribune on March 17, 2011 at 2:01 pm with 7 Comments »
March 17, 2011 2:01 pm

The nearly $800 million drop in state revenues announced today will delay the rollout of lawmakers’ first draft of the 2011-13 budget.

The House is first to try its hand at writing a budget this year, and budget vice-chairwoman Jeannie Darneille said a plan based on the previous shortfall of about $4.8 billion was “within a couple nanoseconds” of being finished.

It would have been made public Tuesday, she said, and voted out of the House by the end of next week. But after another bad revenue forecast brought the shortfall over the next 27 months to $5.3 billion, that time frame is “shattered,” said Darneille, D-Tacoma.

“This will force us back to the drawing board for Plan B,” she said.

So what’s Plan B? No specifics, but it will involve “very devastating cuts in virtually every sector,” she said.

But lawmakers knew weeks ago that revenue was likely to dip, right?

“There’s a difference,” Darneille said, “between us academically knowing things could get worse, and emotionally understanding that it is now worse.”

Leave a comment Comments → 7
  1. taxedenoughintacoma says:


    Keep starving them. They will have to get around to cuts one of these days.


    Slash and burn

    Swing the ax

    Call it what you want. just do it!!!

  2. ilikebutter says:

    Are you aware “taxed enough” cutting services is different than cutting your taxes?

  3. gettowork says:

    Darneille’s last quote is indicative of the state’s Democrat leadership’s ‘head in the sand’ mentality.

    Her and her majority can’t acknowledge the severity of their deficit until it was put in front of their faces. And only then would they address it. How far down the road do we have to go before they acknowledge the additional costs put on the state by Obamacare and plan for them?

    What is the value of a Ways and Means committee that doesn’t have a contingency plan ready for a report that wasn’t a surprise. This is what we get with a reactive legislature rather than a proactive one.

  4. hortonpeak says:

    I am looking forward to the “proactive” legislature. Please provide details. After all to be “proactive” one must by definition have a plan. In the space below please provide your or your groups “proactive” plan.

    Plan: ______________

    But then your comments are as empty as the Darnelles.

  5. gotcha123 says:

    What is it with Progressives and economics, they just don’t get it.

  6. So, you’re in private business. You consider hiring new workers and purchasing new equipment based on current revenue as well as what is projected revenue. Now, you learn that several of your clients are going to go out of business and you don’t know if there will be new business to make up for the lost revenue.

    Here’s your decision: do you just hire new workers and purchase new equipment OR do you wait to see what happens with your client base before making your decision to hold off on new purchases and possibly even scale back your business? If you take option A, your an idiot.

    That’s how budgeting works, folks. You don’t actually make any cuts until you know EXACTLY what you’re dealing with. The Legislature waits until March in odd-numbered years, whether it’s a Republican or Democratic majority, before issuing a working operating budget. Anyone who complains and whines “Why haven’t they just made the cuts to the budget yet?” doesn’t know the first thing about budget writing.

    Billions will be cut from the budget, as they did last year and the year before, in order to balance the budget. Your precious mega highways will be on-hold. State forests and parks could close to recreation and there will be even deeper cuts to corrections, putting our community at risk. We can have block parties with sex predators! Yay!!!

  7. hortonpeak says:

    Let us do this. Cut $6 Billion from the budget simply by cutting every sector by 20% or so. Then all the folks in Olympia can go home and it is done. Then everyone – individuals, newspapers, unions, business, etc. – just shut the hell up for the next two years. No bitching about crime, sex predators, roads, ferry systems, state parks, tuition, pay and benefits, business loopholes, etc. Then, we start all over in two years. I am on board – anyone else. Come on – sign up. Petition the folks in Olympia to do it. I double dare everyone who has ever commented about editorials, letters, political buzz, etc. I might add that no elected official or candidate can use any of this in any campaign literature. Should they – it is an automatic vote against them. So far my petition has one signature – mine. Cheers.

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