Braun dismayed by lack of major tax relief in Senate budget proposal

OLYMPIA…Sen. John Braun, R-Centralia and budget leader for Washington’s Senate Republican Caucus, offered this statement about the supplemental operating budget proposed today by the state Senate’s Democrat majority.

“The majority could have done something truly memorable with this budget. With the state’s revenue situation running 1.5 billion dollars ahead of predictions, the Democrats could have delivered the 30-dollar car tabs approved by voters in November, or another form of major tax relief. Instead, their proposal simply spreads most all of that money around between agencies — another example of government first, taxpayers second. That’s disappointing because opportunities like this are rare.

“While there are good things in this proposal, that’s to be expected from so much additional spending. I see an appropriation related to the homelessness situation, yet the majority is ignoring the public-safety and accountability components that should be part of the comprehensive response taxpayers deserve. To focus only on funding reflects the same one-dimensional approach the governor has taken.

“The lack of really meaningful tax relief in this plan is more evidence of the government greed we saw with the billions in unnecessary tax increases approved last year and the billion-dollar business-tax hike approved just a couple of weeks ago. Republicans are listening to the people, and the people want some of their money back; all this taxing and spending makes you wonder who the Democrats are listening to.”