Last year's drama in Congress over reauthorizing the Export-Import Bank (the bank was eventually reopened in December 2015) continues this year in a different form. U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Alabama and the Senate Banking Committee chairman, is blocking the nomination of a third Ex-Im Bank board member. At least three members must sit on the bank's board in order to approve deals of more than $10 million.
Kriss wrote a few days ago that the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council (ERFC) increased the state revenue forecast last week. In near general fund–state plus opportunity pathways (NGFS+) terms, 2015–17 revenue is expected to increase by $308.2 million and 2017–19 revenue is expected to increase by $126.4 million.
As required by the state Supreme Court, the Legislature submitted its 2016 report on its McCleary progress to the Court on May 18. The same day, the attorney general asked the Court to lift the contempt order and end sanctions.
The state Economic and Revenue Forecast Council held its quarterly meeting on Wednesday. The official forecast of general fund–state (GF–S) revenue for the current biennium (2015–17) increased by $293.5 million to $37,430.8 million from the $37,137.3 million that had been forecasted in February. The forecast for 2017–19 was increased by $126.4 million to $40,251.6 million.
Today's podcast topic is our new comprehensive report on K-12 education funding in Washington and the state Supreme Court's McCleary ruling, which mandates full state funding of basic education by 2018. We discuss the report, what the Legislature's done so far (a lot) and what it still has left to do (a lot).
For the last several months a discussion has been ongoing in Seattle about how to increase funding for the Office of Labor Standards (OLS). The OLS was established in 2015 to enforce standards related to city ordinances like the minimum wage and paid sick leave.
In a new report, we write about the McCleary decision, education funding enhancements the state has made in response, and what remains to be done. We also provide background on the state property tax system and school funding.