LATEST BLOGS

While racing budget clock, don't forget the public
By JASON MERCIER  | 
Jun 22, 2017

With eight days to go until the end of the fiscal year, where do the 2017-19 budget negotiations stand? Your guess is as good as mine. The last publicly available budget proposals had the Senate spending $43.1 billion (13% increase) relying on $1.5 billion in tax increases. The House proposal was for $44.7 billion in spending (17% increase) counting on $3 billion in tax increases. Both of these budgets blew past the nearly $42 billion in revenue taxpayers are already providing (7% increase). These budgets represent huge public investments relying on some form of tax increases and once the white smoke finally rises from the budget negotiations, taxpayers will have little time to review the details and comment before a vote is taken. 

 

 

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U.S. Senate Republicans Release Their Health Care Reform Bill
By ROGER STARK  | 
Jun 22, 2017

Republicans in the United States Senate released their proposed health care reform bill today. It is very similar to the U.S. House bill passed last month. The next step is the analysis by the Congressional Budget Office. It is anticipated that the Senate will vote on the bill next week before the July 4th recess. It is not a comprehensive bill in overturning Obamacare. Like the House bill, however, it is a good start and aligns with the House bill on fundamentals.

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According to Sound Transit, their own Board Chair should not be allowed to use Sound Transit buses and trains
By MARIYA FROST  | 
Jun 20, 2017

In a recent interview about the prospect of Pierce County leaving the Sound Transit taxing district, Sound Transit spokesman Geoff Patrick suggested that people who pay transit fares but do not reside in the taxing district are freeloading, and should not be using Sound Transit buses and trains. Whether the comment from the agency is sincere or a slip, it reveals the punitive mindset of the agency toward the public. 

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