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Thursday, January 29, 2009

State running dry

When the Legislature convenes in Olympia on Monday, its agenda will be short on vision.

Never mind green jobs or health care reform. This session is all about how to balance the state’s budget in the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.

Last week’s flooding, which cut off large swaths of Washington from the state capital and froze interstate commerce for days, provided a dire lead-up to what promises to be a grim 105-day session.

With a projected $6 billion budget deficit looming, it was a reminder that unexpected developments could throw a monkey wrench into lawmakers’ efforts to bridge the growing gap between revenue and the state’s progressive agenda.

Besides the weather, legislators will be grappling with other unknowns. read more...

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