budget

Unless lawmakers in the other Washington can come to an agreement, the US is facing $85 billion of automatic spending cuts. How will sequestration hit us here in the Evergreen state?

Ross Reynolds talks with Governor Jay Inslee's budget director, David Schumacher, about how the looming federal budget cuts will impact Washington state.

Douglas Foster On South Africa After Mandela

Jan 28, 2013
After Mandela
Courtesy/Liveright

Capitalism, democracy and HIV all arrived at about the same time in South Africa, where the promise of the Mandela era has still not been met. The nation struggles with an epidemic of poverty, illness and violence. Can the next generation of leaders reshape its cultural and political realities? Douglas Foster, author of "After Mandela: The Struggle for Freedom in Post-Apartheid South Africa," joins us.

School buses parked in a parking lot.
Flickr / tncountryfan

Washington Governor Chris Gregoire proposed a new wholesale vehicle fuel tax Tuesday that you might notice at the gas pump. The governor said the move will help the state support education by helping cover the costs of getting kids to school.

Currently, school districts help pay for students' transportation needs, but a recent court ruling says state government is not doing enough to support education. That includes education-related transportation.

"We're building a budget assuming everybody works their problems out in the best interest of the nation." That's how Stan Marshburn, outgoing director of Washington State's Office of Financial Management is planning for the fiscal cliff.

He says we're likely to suffer either way. If we go over the cliff, we can expect 50 percent cut to state military spending. To avoid the cliff, federal lawmakers might agree to reduce Medicaid spending -- another precious source of federal money.

Marshburn tells Ross his biggest concern is consumer confidence, since Washington gets so much of its money from sales tax.  He says reduced consumer spending could impact Washington's economy 10 times more than the actual fiscal cliff itself.

Ed Murray
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

State Senator Ed Murray is the new majority leader of the Washington state senate.  But he faces some tough challenges, including a $900 million budget hole, a Supreme Court ruling that requires full funding for basic K-12 education and a possible rebellion by conservative Democrats.  David Hyde sits down with State Senator Ed Murray and asks, What's next? 

The Seattle City Council is voting on the city budget next Monday. They’ve made some changes in  Mayor McGinn’s original proposal.  Ross Reynolds talks with Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn about the upcoming budget vote.

(Photo/City of Kent)

The Mayor of Kent, Washington is proposing another round of layoffs and new taxes to bridge a $2 million budget shortfall. Mayor Suzette Cooke presented her 2013-2014 budget to the City Council Tuesday. In her opening speech, Mayor Cooke called her budget “as ugly as the economic times we face.”

Randy Dorn
(AP Photo/John Froschauer, File)

Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn has asked for an additional $4.1 billion for basic education in his biennial budget proposal, a 39 percent increase compared to the current budget. Dorn says that’s what it’ll take for the state Legislature to fulfill its constitutional duty to fully fund K-12 education.

City of Tacoma website

Tacoma officials are proposing slashing 217 city jobs over the next two years in order to bridge a looming budget gap of $63 million.

The police and fire departments would both lose 27 officers and two support staff. Other layoffs would result from the restructuring of several city departments.

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