Dear Friends and Neighbors,
Day 40 of the 60-day legislative session is coming to a close. House Republicans unveiled the first operating budget proposal of the year at a news conference today. We talked about state priorities, budget sustainability and transparency in the process. I'm proud of the plan we have put forth and look forward to comparing it with what House Democrats propose next week. I will share more details with you then.
State revenue forecast
The state revenue forecast presented yesterday showed a slight uptick in the economy. State exports, in particular, are strong. We are also seeing fewer people receive state services. This is welcomed news, but should not be used as justification to avoid state government and economic reforms this legislative session. We must use these tough budget and economic times as an opportunity to find new efficiencies in state agencies and improve our business climate.
My Medicaid fraud prevention bill has passed the House! Click on the links below to learn more
The House passed my Medicaid fraud prevention bill on a 96-1 vote late Monday night. This bipartisan legislation would give the state Health Care Authority more tools to combat Medicaid fraud and abuse – saving our state millions of dollars in the process. In tough budget times especially, every tax dollar should be spent wisely. House Bill 2571 would bring more accountability to our system and employ private-sector modeling and technologies in the public sector. You can read my news release here.
To watch my video update this week on this issue, please click here or on the picture to the right.
Town hall meeting reminder
I would like to thank all of you who participated in my telephone town hall meeting on Wednesday night. More than 3,400 people joined in at some point during the hour-long call. I appreciate the participation and feedback I received.
Just a reminder that I will be holding a quarterly, traditional town hall meeting tomorrow – Saturday, February 18. The event will run from 11:00 a.m. to noon, and be held in the multipurpose room at Ridgeview Elementary School in Spokane (5610 North Maple Street). We will open the doors at 10:30 a.m.
Have a great weekend.
421 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
360-786-7922 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000