I missed this in the Senate budget earlier this week, but others sure didn't:
45. Star USA Skating Spokane - Funding is provided to Star USA to assist hosting the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Spokane, scheduled for Jan. 14-24, 2010.
How much funding? A couple hundred grand.
That's quite a bit less than the $600,000 that the group was hoping for (see page 13) on the eve of the legislative session last December. But it's still raised some eyebrows among budget hawks, at a time when the state is proposing laying off thousands of people and slashing university budgets, health care for the poor, and support for things as basic as the state's poison control center.
From Northwest Public Radio: So what do lawmakers fund? One item in the Senate budget – but not the House – is 200-thousand dollars for the US Figure Skating Championships in Spokane next year. That was a special request of Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown – a Democrat from Spokane.
From the Washington Policy Center: Here are some examples of those priorities that apparently are recession proof...
From the Tacoma News-Tribune: Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown is from Spokane. (It's just a coincidence, I'm sure.)...I point this out only because, in a sea of $4 billion in "hard" spending cuts, isn't it interesting to see what new things are being paid for?