Katie Baird with the Tacoma News Tribune:
Should we be upset that Congress has just promised Washington an extra $526 million? Not I, nor, I think, will others whose kids go to our public schools, who use Medicaid for health insurance or have a parent in a nursing home, or who otherwise support the wide range of services the state provides: This money will help assure their continuation.
But according to Richard S. Davis (column, 8-11), we would be better off without this additional federal money. Basically, Davis believes this windfall has allowed elected officials to temporarily avoid the hard choices ahead.
To his credit, Davis isn’t just being masochistic. He seems to genuinely believe that the short- term pain of no federal revenue would be more than offset by the long-term gain from “resetting the state budget” to a permanently lower level.
However, there is more than one way to “reset” the state budget to fix our state budget problems. The most promising of those is Initiative 1098, the Income Tax Initiative, which voters will decide this fall. If it passes (and passes judicial scrutiny), we will eliminate the state’s budget gap while also dramatically improving the manner in which the state generates its revenue.
Looking for more information about Initiative 1098? Visit the Economic Opportunity Institute website.