by Michael Sarko
– The Capitol Hill Times –
It seems that the wage increase fervor bubbling in Seattle has finally spilled over to Olympia. Recently, Governor Jay Inslee made a $200-million change to his proposed budget that would send the funds to Washington public schools, a significant portion of it aimed at increasing teacher wages. Inslee also voiced support for raising the state minimum wage $9.32.
Fallout from the 2013 November election continues as the Grocery Manufacturers Association calls Washington State campaign finance laws into question. The GMA was a strong opponent of last year’s ballot initiative that would have required all food producers to label genetically modified items. The initiative lost at the polls but was in a close race despite the opposition raising considerably more money than the law’s proponents. Now the GMA is calling state limits on out-of-state campaign donations unconstitutional, potentially leading to a fight with Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s office.
Fear not for your buses, at least for now. The King County Council has submitted a tax measure to fund Metro bus service in the case that the state legislature doesn’t vote to avoid cuts to transit. The measure would not only pump money into the ailing Metro system, it would also establish a low-income fare program to increase accessibility to buses.