Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Cloudy 34° Cloudy

Eye On Olympia

SATURDAY, APRIL 4, 2009

A closer look at the budget...

Lawmakers on Friday released the details of their proposed two-year operating budget and a quick scan of the 515-page document suggests that they did, in fact, use scalpels instead of hatchets. In addition to the major changes for schools, colleges, social services and health care,…

Continue reading this post »

FRIDAY, APRIL 3, 2009


More on a state income tax...

From our print story:For years in Washington’s capital, state income tax proposals have been viewed much like those periodic bills to declare Eastern Washington a 51st state. They’re attention-getters aimed at spurring a discussion. No one expects them to actually pass.This year’s different.Full story is…

Continue reading this post »

THURSDAY, APRIL 2, 2009

Yup, it's real...

After years of a few lawmakers flirting with the idea of a state income tax, key lawmakers now say they're seriously considering it as a way to help the cash-strapped state budget in the long term. A possible state income tax on people earning $500,000…

Continue reading this post »


An income tax?

By now, Republican campaign "operatives" across the state have undoubtedly already clipped and scanned in this headline from a story that moved on the AP wire last night: "Democrats Propose Income Tax Bill."As the story notes -- repeatedly -- Democrats so far seem to be…

Continue reading this post »


Barlowparkermarr bill passes...

If you happened to be watching TVW yesterday afternoon, you may well have been left wondering what they're putting in the House coffeepot these days. What the hell was that? (Tech note: To replay this segment, refresh this page on your browser first. The video,…

Continue reading this post »


Figureskating with a target on their back...

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…

Continue reading this post »

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 1, 2009



Senate capital budget...

...is here.Local highlights: -$28 million to renovate and expand Eastern Washington University's Patterson Hall.-$32 million for a new technical education building at Spokane Community College.-$29 million fora new life sciences and chemistry building at Spokane Fall Community College.-$39 million for a new electronics engineering building…

Continue reading this post »


Capital budget details

The Senate has released its $3.3 billion two year capital budget. It's $700 million less than the governor's proposal in December, and about $1.3 billion (29 percent) less than the last two-year budget.-K-12 construction assistance programs would be fully funded,-Higher ed would get just over…

Continue reading this post »



And now for the good news...

Both the Senate and House will today release their capital (i.e. construction) budget proposals for the next two years. That means millions of dollars for local schools, university buildings, community centers and other projects.I'll start posting specifics and links soon.

Continue reading this post »

TUESDAY, MARCH 31, 2009




Re: Higher ed:

the house budget would cut operating costs $713 million, which -- after tuition hikes -- works out to a net decrease of 10-17 percent at the state's four-year schools and 13 percent at community and technical colleges.

Continue reading this post »


MONDAY, MARCH 30, 2009


Sen. Ken Jacobsen has introduced five times the average number of bills for other lawmakers this year. 
 (Associated Press / The Spokesman-Review)

Fish and Wildlife battle: not over yet...

The battle to strip the state Fish and Wildlife Commission of some of its powers -- mainly hiring and firing the director of the agency -- continues.Commercial fisherman say the board is tilted too far in favor of sport/recreational anglers. The latter say that the…

Continue reading this post »




Budget reaction: the short form...

I'll have lots more reactions later today, but here's the abbreviated version of reactions to the state Senate budget plan released this morning:"...Devastating..."-Sen. Rodney Tom, D-Medina"...Devastating..."-Diane Sosne, Service Employees International Union Healthcare 1199 NW"...Devastating..."-Sen. Margarita Prentice, D-Renton"...Devastating..."-Tom Geiger, United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 21"...Devastating..."-Mary…

Continue reading this post »


The Senate's proposed budget: the details...

After months of behind-the-scenes negotiations and speculation, lawmakers in the state Senate this morning proposed a budget to bridge the state's $9 billion budget shortfall over the next two years.It calls for closing the state prison on McNeil Island, doing away with hundreds of millions…

Continue reading this post »

FRIDAY, MARCH 27, 2009

Battle of the potatoes...

Gov. Chris Gregoire has bet a batch of Washington-grown potatoes that Gonzaga's Bulldogs will trounce the UNC Tar Heels tonight in Memphis.North Carolina's Gov. Bev Perdue's countered with NC sweet potatoes.Whoever wins, the potatoes will go to a food bank.

Continue reading this post »


Short takes and breaking news from the Washington Legislature and the state capital.