Wash. House seeks to restore teacher raises
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- House Democrats have unveiled a supplemental budget package that seeks to restore cost-of-living increases for teachers and puts additional money into education, and which looks to close four tax exemptions, including one that grants a sales tax break to some out-of-state shoppers.
The more than $200 million overall proposal was released Wednesday. It puts $60 million for books, technology and supplies in K-12 classrooms, and $10 million to improve community mental health services, including $8.2 million in response to a settlement that requires the state to expand mental health services for children.
It also looks to spend about $51 million to restore teachers' voter-approved cost-of-living raises, which have been suspended for the last few budget cycles.
The proposal would save $100 million by closing four tax exemptions, including the out-of-state sales tax one, another on timber product waste claimed by oil refineries, and another on sales tax on bottled water.