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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 18, 2012

CONTACT: Brendon Wold, Senior Information Officer - (360) 786-7698

Rep. Gary Alexander - (360) 786-7990

Alexander responds to governor’s proposed ‘tax increase’ budget

‘I firmly believe we can meet our constitutional and moral obligations of funding education, public safety and protecting the most vulnerable without raising taxes,’ says Alexander
Rep. Gary Alexander, R-Olympia, released today the following statement regarding Governor Chris Gregoire’s 2013-15 budget proposal:
“I have great respect for Gov. Gregoire and her budget team.  They did their best to come up with what they believe is a balanced solution to our 2013-15 biennial budget.  They put forth a spending plan in good faith to address the McCleary state Supreme Court ruling – something the Education Funding Task Force was unwilling or unable to do.
“However, the fact that her budget increases spending by about $3 billion and includes around $1.2 billion in new taxes leads me to believe her proposals are dead on arrival.
“Her budget ties student transportation funding to one of the most volatile funding sources – a tax on the wholesale price of gas.  She also ties certain health care funding to new taxes on beer, candy, soda and gum – something the voters soundly rejected just a couple years ago.
“While I can see using a few of her budget reductions, I just can’t see the incoming legislature or the new governor using her overall budget or her tax increases as a starting point.
“I want to make it clear that I firmly believe we can meet our constitutional and moral obligations of funding education, public safety and protecting the most vulnerable without raising taxes.  We need to prioritize spending and seriously review some of the policies that are still ‘on the books’ but haven’t been funded in years or never funded at all.  It’s time to eliminate some of these programs altogether instead of stringing folks along with continued broken promises.
“My intention is to continue working on our House Republican budget plan that meets the education spending goals of the McCleary decision, protects public safety, protects the most vulnerable, and helps propel small businesses and employers around the state past the ‘recovery’ stage of the economic downturn and into the ‘prosperity’ stage.
“It’s very possible that, like last year, House Republicans will once again release the legislature’s first budget of the session.”

For more information, visit our Web site at: houserepublicans.wa.gov.

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov
455 John L. O'Brien Building
P.O. Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504-0600