Washington Research Council

Emily Makings

April 05 , 2022 - Emily Makings

Gov. Inslee’s budget vetoes will not have a significant fiscal impact

On Thursday, Gov. Inslee signed and partially vetoed the supplemental operating budget. (His veto message is here.) Appropriations levels have not yet been officially updated on the state’s fiscal site, but it looks like the vetoes will reduce appropriations from funds subject to the outlook (NGFO) by about $12.9 million. (As passed by the Legislature, […]


April 01 , 2022 - Emily Makings

Any way you look at it, the supplemental spending change is historically large

In our policy brief comparing the House- and Senate-passed supplemental budgets, we included a chart showing that the proposed net changes in appropriations from funds subject to the outlook (NGFO) would be larger than previous supplementals and even larger or on par with previous biennial budgets. That chart went back to 2007–09. Since then, I’ve […]


March 31 , 2022 - Emily Makings

The official budget outlook will continue to assume revenues from the capital gains tax

Today the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council (ERFC) held a budget outlook methodology meeting. The budget outlook workgroup wanted the ERFC’s guidance as to how to treat revenues from the capital gains tax in the upcoming official budget outlook (based on the 2022 supplemental). The capital gains tax was adopted last year, and the first […]


March 18 , 2022 - Emily Makings

After the 2022 supplemental budget, Washington has about $145.6 million left of general federal COVID relief

The coronavirus state fiscal recovery fund (CSFRF) is the most flexible of the federal COVID relief money. The state of Washington received $4.428 billion from the CSFRF. (The funds must be obligated by Dec. 31, 2024 and spent by Dec. 31, 2026.) Last year, the Legislature appropriated $102.6 million of the CSFRF as part of […]


March 18 , 2022 - Emily Makings

Budget funds a committee to make recommendations on a potential Washington future fund program

This year the state treasurer requested legislation (HB 1861/SB 5752) that would create a Washington future fund trust fund, as a way to provide funds for people born into low-income families that they could use as adults. As originally introduced, the bills would have deposited in the trust fund $3,200 for each person born in […]


March 18 , 2022 - Emily Makings

Broadband funding in the operating and capital supplementals, and a new legislative task force

The supplemental operating budget includes $50.0 million from the general fund–state for digital equity and broadband access programs (sec. 128(197)). These could include programs to increase broadband access for low-income and rural communities. The supplemental capital budget appropriates $100 million in federal funding (the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act) for broadband planning and infrastructure. Of […]


March 17 , 2022 - Emily Makings

Federal relief funds to be used to begin a new effort to move people from public rights-of-way to housing

The supplemental operating budget passed by the Legislature uses $45.1 million from the coronavirus state fiscal recovery fund (CSFRF, the general federal relief that the Legislature has the most flexibility in using) for grants to move people living on state-owned rights-of-way to permanent housing (sec. 128(132)). Under the program, the Department of Commerce would make […]


March 17 , 2022 - Emily Makings

Operating budget includes $150 million for a new, low-interest student loan program

This year the Legislature passed E2SHB 1736, which establishes the Washington student loan program. (The bill has not yet been signed by the governor.) The bill requires the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) to design a student loan program that has an interest rate that is lower than loan rates subsidized by the federal government. […]


March 17 , 2022 - Emily Makings

New rules will be required on how transitional kindergarten enrollments affect all-day kindergarten funding allocations

In Washington, children under five years old who do not have access to early learning opportunities but who need extra preparation for kindergarten (as determined by school districts) may enroll in transitional kindergarten—if their school district offers the program. According to the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), by rule, school districts may “adopt […]


March 16 , 2022 - Emily Makings

The operating budget includes $200 million for future community reinvestment grants

Gov. Inslee proposed creating a community reinvestment account for communities that “have experienced historically and inequitably enforced criminal laws and penalties for illegal drug sales, possession and use.” His supplemental budget proposal would have transferred $125 million from the general fund–state (GFS) to the account and then appropriated the full amount. The governor’s request legislation […]