Failure of majority Democrats to reach agreement on state budget leads lawmakers into special legislative session
After 103 days and the year-long knowledge of a looming fiscal crisis this session, the governor along with majority Democrats in the House and Senate failed to pass a budget. Now their disagreements on state spending will take the Legislature into a costly special session. Reps. Joel Kretz and Shelly Short expressed their disappointment in the failure of Democrat leadership to do the jobs they were elected to do and issued the following statements:
Deputy Republican Leader Joel Kretz, R-Wauconda:
“To not have finished our work on time is extremely frustrating. We have been aware of the serious budget trouble facing us since the revenue forecast last November, so it is inexcusable to me that we are leaving town without a state budget, only to return next week for a special session. It is as though Democrats didn’t believe they really had to write a budget this year.
“For my part, I believe we should have tackled the budget at the start of session instead of waiting until the final two weeks to work out an agreement. Mostly, I am frustrated for taxpayers who expected a solid and sustainable budget solution within the allotted 105 days. Clearly, one-party rule in the Legislature and governor’s mansion has not worked well for the citizens of Washington.”
Rep. Shelly Short, R-Addy:
“This is beyond frustrating, it’s ridiculous. It’s like they just gave up. The majority party accepted the idea of a special session weeks ago and because of that, we’ve sat around twiddling our thumbs instead of doing the peoples’ business.
“We’ve passed six bills in three days off the House floor. That should take an hour or two, not three days. The poor leadership coming from the Democrats and the lack of desire to be accountable to the citizens of this state are just astounding.”
The 30-day special will begin on Tuesday, April 26. Each day of a special session can cost taxpayers as much as $16,000.
For more information, contact Bobbi Cussins, Public Information Officer: (360) 786-7252