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I receive a lot of feedback on the makeup of the state Legislature. Some ask why lawmakers only convene for part of the year and others wonder why we aren’t a full-time Legislature.Citizen
Our state constitution is clear: Education is the “paramount duty” of the state. The recent state Supreme Court decision in McCleary vs. State of Washington reaffirmed what many of us already knew to be the case – K-12 basic education is not being amply provided for in the state budget. The solution to this is to fund education first.
On March 2, even those of you who wouldn’t normally follow the legislative process tuned in online at tvw.org to watch history being made. A bipartisan coalition of senators came together to change the direction of our state.
There it sits. It has company. It lies beneath that pile of mail you have on your kitchen counter. You may not open it. It’s too much trouble. You have got to find a stamp. You don’t really know what the entire hubbub is about.
Many of you know that I served as the president of the Enumclaw School Board before running for state office. Education is my passion. I have children in the public school system and know that while our school district is successful, there are areas in our state where school districts are leaving children behind. Every child deserves the opportunity to have a first-class education.
On Nov. 28, Gov. Chris Gregoire called all lawmakers into special session because of a $2 billion spending gap due to an unsustainable budget passed last May. Since arriving in Olympia two weeks ago, the only thing we managed to do is pass a bailout bill for a Wenatchee arena.