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Tag: Joseph Zarelli

Sep.
9th

House Democrats eyeing tax vote for spring ballot

As they wait for details of the revenue forecast, lawmakers are divided on whether to return to Olympia right away or hold off until January.

Opinions don’t divide along party lines.

Senate Democrats are eyeing the possibility of a November or December return, while Senate Republican leaders are lining up behind Sen. Joe Zarelli, who says more time is needed to figure out a plan that can pass bipartisan muster.

In the House, Democrats don’t agree with their Republican counterparts on much — certainly not on the budget that passed this winter with no GOP votes — but

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April
12th

Rainier School would close under Senate budget

The Senate budget released today would close two of the state’s five residential facilities for the developmentally disabled, Rainier School in Buckley and Frances Haddon Morgan Center in Bremerton, and plows most of the savings into programs that would keep those with disabilities in their home communities rather than in state institutions.

The budget proposals by House Democrats and Gov. Chris Gregoire called for closing Yakima Valley School, not Rainier.

With nearly 400 residents, Rainier is the largest of the state’s five Residential Habilitation Centers. Republican budget writer Sen. Joseph Zarelli said it makes more sense to close a

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Sep.
16th

Coming state budget cuts will top 6 percent

Today’s highly anticipated state revenue forecast is dire, and it confirms what state officials have been saying: More deep spending cuts are coming.

With the economy stagnant and tax collections down, this year’s projected revenue has dropped by $770 million just since June. That leaves Gov. Chris Gregoire to cut $516 million from the state budget, which amounts to more than 6 percent of each affected agency or program.

Most of the cuts will fall on health and human services.

Since the cuts will be made over nine months, Sen. Joseph Zarelli said they will really amount to

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