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Dear Friends and Neighbors,
“We, the people of the State of Washington, grateful to the Supreme Ruler of the Universe, for our liberties, do ordain this constitution.” – Washington State Constitution, Preamble, 1889
Next Monday, Nov. 28, the Legislature will convene for a special session to resolve our state's $2 billion budget crisis. The governor released her budget proposal today, along with a proposal for a tax increase of nearly half a billion dollars.
How the special session will proceed is difficult to say, but we can certainly count on a big debate over the priorities of state government. My priorities remain education, public safety, and care for the most vulnerable. I hope we can make some fundamental changes to state spending without jeopardizing the core functions of government, and without further harming the private sector. A vibrant and growing private sector is the key to economic recovery.
Our community and state face challenges, but we have many blessings to count. The Preamble to our state constitution, quoted above, expresses gratitude to God for “our liberties.” It is remarkable that the very first thought of our state's founders was to give credit to “the Supreme Ruler of the Universe” for the conditions in which free government can flourish. We have so much more to be thankful for besides: our families, our neighbors, our faith communities, our system of free enterprise, the beauty and abundance of Washington.
Personally, I count it an extraordinary privilege to serve this community. I ask for your prayers in the weeks ahead. And I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
468 John L.O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
(360) 786-7968 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000