February 06, 2018

Braun bill to improve management of state trust lands heard in budget committee

Legislation aimed at improving management of Washington state’s forest trust lands was the subject of a public hearing in Monday’s Senate Ways and Means Committee. The bill, sponsored by Sen. John Braun, establishes an average annual goal of raising $230 million from activities on the state’s forest and trust lands....
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January 25, 2018

Exempting $100,000 in home value from property taxes more equitable, progressive approach to tax relief

Homeowners throughout the entire state would see tax relief under newly proposed legislation exempting $100,000 of the value of a primary residence from state property tax. Sen. John Braun sponsored a constitutional amendment authorizing a homestead exemption, which would go to voters in 2018, and legislation setting the $100,000 level,...
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January 24, 2018

Community college students would pay 10% lower tuition under Braun bill

More than 170,000 students attending Washington’s 34 community and technical colleges would pay 10 percent less in tuition under new legislation sponsored by Sen. John Braun. “More jobs than ever require some training or education after high school,” said Braun. “The state’s community and technical colleges train students in a...
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January 23, 2018

Lower B&O taxes for manufacturers proposed to help reverse job losses

A bipartisan group of lawmakers are hoping to revive a reduction in the state’s business and occupation tax for manufacturers and reverse the trend of significant job losses in the sector. The proposal would implement a 40 percent reduction in the tax rate for manufacturers, which passed with overwhelming support...
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January 19, 2018

New capital budget makes major investments in flood protection and schools

The Washington State Legislature approved a new capital budget Thursday evening, bringing a variety of investments in infrastructure and community projects to Southwest Washington according to Sen. John Braun. The $4.2 billion budget, which runs through June 2019, makes historic investments in building schools, expanding mental health treatment facilities and...
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January 18, 2018

Mental health treatment capacity would expand dramatically with behavioral health bonds

Legislation sponsored by Sen. John Braun  and Sen. David Frockt asks voters to approve $500 million in state bonds to greatly expand community mental health treatment facilities statewide. This comes as reports and analysis show Washington’s inadequate options for people facing a variety of mental health crises. “Treating people with...
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January 14, 2018

Education funding update

Last year I provided many updates on what lawmakers proposed and ultimately passed to provide a high-quality education for all children. The end result was a historic investment that not only amply funds our public schools but also makes education more equitable throughout the state. Since 2012, the Legislature will...
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January 13, 2018

Property tax relief for all Washingtonians

The share of property taxes paid by homeowners compared to commercial properties has increased significantly in recent decades. I proposed legislation to provide equitable tax relief by creating a homestead property tax exemption. The policy would exempt the first $100,000 of a homeowner’s assessed value from state property taxes. If passed...
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January 12, 2018

2018 session underway

State lawmakers returned to Olympia on Monday for what is scheduled to be a short 60-day session. Since we adjourned in July, the dynamic has shifted as Democrats won a special election in November, giving them a narrow majority in the Senate for the first time since 2012. We accomplished...
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