Northwest News reporter Austin Jenkins writes that this may be the last day of the special session.
A joint announcement from the House and Senate says the budget update will increase funding for mental health and homelessness and start to address the state’s teacher shortage — top priorities of House Democrats. The budget will also still balance over four years, something Senate Republicans insisted upon…
Legislative staff say details on what’s in the budget won’t be available until Tuesday morning. The legislature could adjourn as early as Tuesday night.
Joseph O’Sullivan reported in the Seattle Times yesterday on the agreement.
The updated spending plan — called a supplemental operating budget — adds about $191 million in new spending over the current $38.2 billion 2015-17 operating budget, according to a summary of the proposal. About $40 million of that is earmarked for mental-health programs and the state’s two psychiatric hospitals. The proposal also includes $7 million to help recruit and retain K-12 staff and support for beginning educators.
There’s more in the story. O’Sullivan also writes that lawmakers are expected to adopt the budget today.