Rep. Gary Alexander, R-Olympia, and ranking Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, says he is eager to begin working with legislative budget writers on a responsible budget solution. In the wake of today’s press conference by a bipartisan group of Senators, he issued this statement:
“I have met with the governor on the state of current budget negotiations and remain ready, willing and able to get to work on a final budget solution. From the beginning, my goals – and the goals of my caucus – have been to create a responsible, common-sense budget that is sustainable in the years to come; budget our resources based on a clear set of priorities that funds education first, protects public safety and the most vulnerable, and does not include general tax increases; and, does not rely on accounting gimmicks to balance the books.
“While we are anxious to start a serious dialogue on the areas where we agree and disagree, we will not compromise our priorities and principles in the name of bipartisanship. Gimmicks and budget shell games have no place in our budgeting process. They are a ‘quick fix’ that has only exacerbated the budget problem in recent years and legislators should not be tempted to sacrifice the long-term stability of our budget for the short-term perceived benefit of questionable accounting maneuvers
“Today’s budget announcement from the bipartisan group of Senators is positive news. I am hopeful that this is a first step in bringing everyone back to the negotiating table in an earnest attempt at quickly and responsibly solving our state’s budget shortfall.”
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