Thursday, August 11, 2022


A new report says Georgia should step up for mothers and infants, Oregon communities force a polluter to shut down, and we have an update on the FBI's probe of Trump allies, including Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa.


Inflation could be at a turning point, House members debate the expansion of the IRS, and former President Donald Trump invokes the Fifth Amendment in a deposition over his business practices.


Infrastructure funding is on its way, ranchers anticipate money from the Inflation Reduction Act, and rural America is becoming more diverse, but you wouldn't know it by looking at the leadership.

How Can State Lawmakers Craft Budget for WA Working Class?


Wednesday, January 2, 2019   

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Washington state's long legislative session is around the corner, and budget concerns will be at the forefront.

Misha Werschkul, executive director of the Washington State Budget and Policy Center, said she expects movement on fiscal policies she sees as key to working-class Washingtonians. She said the state needs to invest more in early learning - increasing options for kids age five and younger, and properly compensating educators.

Gov. Jay Inslee has proposed investing more than $170 million in early learning over the next two years. Werschkul thinks mental health funding should be another priority.

"We know that over the last many years, there's been a significant under-funding of mental health services,” Werschkul said. “And this year, one of the things that's going to be really important for the Legislature to look at is what is the funding level, both for those institutional settings like Western State Hospital, but also, how are we meeting people's needs in the community?"

Inslee has proposed replacing Western State Hospital and also investing $675 million in the upcoming biennium. The governor's budget relies on an increase in the capital-gains tax.

Republicans strongly oppose this proposal, saying it's an unconstitutional tax on income and it would hurt small businesses. Democrats come into the session with majorities in both chambers.

Werschkul said the state needs to address tax revenue collection, too. A recent report from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy called the Evergreen State's tax system the most regressive in the nation.

Werschkul said many Washingtonians she's talked with feel they're falling behind financially. She believes that's due in part to the hidden costs of the state's upside-down tax system.

"This session is a real opportunity for legislators to show that they're going to put the well-being of middle- and lower-income families at the forefront, and really do something to help people meet their basic needs,” she said.

Lawmakers head back to Olympia on January 14.

get more stories like this via email

Pictured in the center is Francine "Fran" Pace, one of 11 graduates of this summer's Youth Leadership Academy for Iowans with disabilities. (Photo courtesy of DD Council).

Health and Wellness

Nearly a dozen Iowa youths with disabilities are taking newly developed leadership skills out into the world. A summer academy wrapped up this month…


A coalition of community organizations teamed up in Oregon to force a chronic polluter out of business, and bring environmental justice to a nearby …

Health and Wellness

During National Health Center Week, health-care advocates are highlighting the work Community Health Centers are doing to improve access to care …

The Inflation Reduction Act would cap the price of insulin at $35 a month for people on Medicare. (Sherry Young/Adobestock)

Health and Wellness

Health advocates are hailing the new Inflation Reduction Act, saying it would be the biggest health-care reform since the Affordable Care Act…

Social Issues

As parts of Southern California suffer with triple-digit temperatures, state lawmakers are set to vote today on two bills to study and mitigate heat …

Nearly half of Hispanic or Latina women of reproductive age in Georgia are uninsured. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

While abortion care is in the headlines, a new report says accessing other health-care services is a challenge for many women in Georgia. Data from …


Hunters, landowners and wildlife managers are gathering in Montana to discuss the need for novel approaches to elk management. The 2022 Elk …


Next week, North Dakota landowners will get a chance to hear updates on a proposed underground pipeline for transporting and sequestering carbon …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021