To subscribe to Sen. Palumbo’s E-Newsletter, click here.

For alerts about specific issues, click here.

  • E News- 2017 session comes to an end

E News- 2017 session comes to an end

Dear friends and neighbors,

During the campaign, I promised to fight every day to ensure the 1st Legislative District got its fair share of infrastructure investments. Our district did very well in the supplemental transportation budget that passed the Legislature this year. We also did well in the capital budget that passed the House by a 92-1 vote but fell short of passing in the Senate.

Unfortunately, the capital budget was used as leverage by the Senate’s Republican majority to address the Supreme Court’s Hirst decision on contentious water rights. Democrats in the House offered numerous alternative solutions that were ultimately rejected. When it was clear there wasn’t time to come up with a permanent solution to this very difficult policy problem, House Democrats offered a two-year suspension of the court ruling. This would have provided relief to rural homeowners waiting for permits, while allowing the Legislature to take the time to come to a thoughtful compromise. That offer was also rejected by Senate Republicans.

If we can collectively find a path to overcome this impasse on Hirst in the months to come, the capital budget will pass with a large bipartisan vote. It is a budget our state needs badly.

NO CAP BUDGET HURTS THE 1st

The $4 billion capital budget would create more than 19,000 construction jobs, invest more than $1 billion in public school construction to lower class sizes, and pump $800 million into our public universities and colleges. Additionally, the capital budget would provide millions of dollars in investments to support our elderly, add new mental health beds, protect our natural environment and get homeless kids off the streets.

Your legislative delegation secured the following investments in the capital budget for the 1st District:

  • $29.5 million for a new parking structure at Cascadia College.
  • $15.3 million for new construction at Juanita High School.
  • $4.4 million for improvements at Mountlake Terrace Elementary School.
  • $3 million for UW Bothell for predesign for a new STEM sciences building.
  • $1.5 million for the Willows Road Regional Trail connection in Kirkland.
  • $1 million for the preservation and conservation of land formerly occupied by the Wayne Golf Course in Bothell.
  • $1 million to extend the Centennial Trail in south Snohomish County in Maltby.
  • $1 million for the North Creek Regional Trail.
  • $250,000 to improve drainage at the Cedar Grove Park Athletic Field.
  • $115,000 to update ADA ramps in Brier.

Although I am not an expert on water rights, I have spent the last two weeks doing shuttle diplomacy between the parties and interest groups in the hope of finding a compromise. I am hopeful that we can continue to negotiate during the interim and find a deal on both the Hirst conundrum and on the capital budget.

Your partner service,