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Eye On Olympia

If the Senate version was the golden goose, then this must be the egg…

A week after the state Senate proposed tens of millions of dollars in state money for local mental health, social service agencies, Washington State University, and other area programs, the House released a budget with virtually none of those things.

Conspicuously absent was $63 million that WSU wanted to spend on its top priority: a new lab building in Pullman. The money would come from interest on WSU's land income, most of it from timber. But no, said House lawmakers. That money's for maintenance, they said, not for building big new structures.

Also nowhere to be found: the Senate's $1.25 million to help clean up the Spokane River, and $10 million -- later $7 million -- for maintenance at the state's five minor-league baseball stadiums.

Stay tuned...

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