Locke declares War on Taxpayers
Governor's action - and inaction - is costing Washington citizens
Commentary from Evergreen Freedom Foundation
2/5/02 - Washington is facing a serious budget crisis and the debate is
how to address it. Some want to streamline government spending and find
efficiencies. Others want to squeeze more money out of citizens and raid
state's emergency fund.
Governor Gary Locke is in the second camp. In fact, he's leading the
The Governor recently proposed scrapping what is left of the
I-601 spending cap so he can get at the state's rainy day funds without
required supermajority vote. And he is pushing hard for an $8.5 billion
increase in transportation taxes and fees.
Locke has, in essence, declared War on Taxpayers. While Washington
struggle to tighten their own belts and meet expenses in a time of high
unemployment and economic crisis, Locke's action - and inaction - is
their burden heavier.
Locke celebrates "on time" completion of train station . . .
with no trains
Governor Locke celebrated the opening of Everett Station on Monday (2/4),
and called it "an extraordinary facility for our new century."
problem: there are no trains. That's because the trains - commuter light
rail - are part of the multi-billion dollar Sound Transit boondoggle that
has turned into the most expensive light rail system in world history. The
project is over-budget and long past schedule.
Locke used the Everett Station event to push for passage of his $8.5
transportation tax package. But more taxes will not solve the state's
To find out why more money will not solve traffic congestion:
Family planning . . . for two-year-olds
The Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) is streamlining its
procedures and finding efficiencies. Recently, the agency decided to stop
mailing family planning brochures to toddlers and seniors.
"We found out that in our diligence to get information out about
planning services that ACES (computer system) has sent out family planning
brochures to two-year-olds and to the elderly," stated a recent DSHS
"We will be working with ACES to send the brochures out to our more
Governor Locke has done nothing to make sure agencies have strong
efficient practices, and clear mission statements. Such measures are
To read more about how to streamline agencies:
Funny math . . . reducing government by adding 10,000 employees
Since taking office in 1996, Locke has added 10,283 new full-time
(FTE) to the state's payroll. At an average annual compensation of $53,437
each, this is no small chunk of change. Locke continues to hire new
employees even in the face of a $2 billion deficit.
Find out what Locke should be doing to address the budget deficit:
Contact: Jason Mercier, Deputy Communications Director
Evergreen Freedom Foundation
A Non-Profit Public Policy Research Organization
P.O. Box 552, Olympia, WA 98507