The Washington Research Council offers a quick, easily-understood graph comparing the House and Senate spending plans (reproduced below).
The WRC goes into more detail on the revenue provisions of each budget in this podcast.
Before the session began, Opportunity Washington stated some budget considerations that are particularly relevant as lawmakers begin final fiscal negotiations:
Even with the ongoing economic recovery, the state budget will face stress for the foreseeable future as a result of court-mandated increases in basic education funding, increased health care expenses, negotiated public employee compensation increases, and increases in other required state spending.
Given these pressures, special emphasis must be placed on controlling key budget drivers, including health care, labor costs, and debt.
Even with some $3 billion in revenue being generated by a growing economy, writing the 2015-17 biennial budget poses special challenges. We urge lawmakers to focus on budget solutions that encourage economic vitality and are sustainable over time.