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Prioritize education and school funding
We need to focus on funding basic services first. As our State Representative, I've focused on a prioritized budget with fiscal restraint, while ensuring we have a voice in how our state dollars are spent.

I've made school funding a priority and not a budget bargaining chip. The Washington State Supreme Court clearly wrote in McCleary et al. v. State of Washington "Fundamental reforms are needed for Washington to meet its constitutional obligation to its students." This means;

Funding education first in the budgeting process. Give education its own line item in the budget, just as we do for transportation and healthcare.
Fund and expand Skills Centers across the state and focus on high demand job opportunities.
Allow more flexibility with credits to make it easier to transfer from community colleges into other higher ed institutions.

Our current State government has been borrowing money for short term non-essential projects and reducing the amount of money left to pay for our essential services. This means there is less money for our schools, public safety and transportation.

We made some progress this year by prioritizing better and were able to increase teachers salaries, fund essential mental health programs and keep our fledgling state charter schools open. All of this was done without raising taxes.

We need to continue to fund education first and prioritize our spending on public safety to protect those most vulnerable in our communities. I am committed to doing just that.

Reduce Traffic Congestion
Fight to remove the $10 tolls from I405 and prevent expansion to other freeways
Reform DOT to focus on congestion relief for all trips not just a few
Improve transportation infrastructure to reduce commute and freight transit times

Even before DOT started the failed I405 project last fall, I've was working with Republicans and Democrats to remove the toll lanes. Common sense says if you remove a general purpose lane, make it difficult for 2+ HOV users and price working families out of lanes they already paid for that the project would fail. Thankfully, after many months of work, the lanes were opened after 5pm and on weekends. There is more to be done and I am committed to rolling back the failed project and opposing the planned expansion to I5 and other freeways.

We need reforms to hold the DOT accountable for completing its projects on time and on budget. Cracked 520 pontoons, Bertha, I405 tolling, customer service issues and cost overruns have eroded the public trust. We need congestion reduction goals built into the project plans. I am working to put the big decisions back in the hands of the people and not the DOT bureaucracy.

We are spending a large percentage of our transportation dollars on transit which represents barely 4% of trips taken. We need to balance our transportation dollars to provide improvements for all road users based on use.

Hold government accountable to those it serves and live within its means

There are many un-elected boards that make decisions on our behalf. We need a say in how our dollars are spent and the things they are spent on. The legislature has given too much decision making authority to bureaucrats that can make changes that have a wide impact to our state. We need to be;

Prioritize the critical services first Education, Public Safety and Transportation Infrastructure
Make the 2/3rds majority requirement to raise taxes permanent. The citizens of Washington have made this clear through the initiative process four times already
Adopt a constitutional amendment to limit the growth of state spending to inflation and population growth
Continue to develop performance audits on government and include performance goals in the budget
   Review the state commissions and boards and their rule making authority

 


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