In this edition, you'll read about other states that have raised revenue during this economic downturn by enacting proposals like some that our lawmakers are considering during this week’s special session. You'll also read about the House's move to apply the state’s sales tax to candy, and about a new study linking soda taxes to better health. The Children’s Alliance strongly supports taxing candy and soda, among other measures, to raise revenue to protect vital services for children and families.
Current WA tax proposals enacted in many states, new report shows I schmudget I 03-12-2010
A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) finds that at least 33 states have raised revenue to meet public needs in the present downturn. Many of the types of actions being considered by Washington State lawmakers have already been enacted other states.
State Budget Will Shrink under Senate
and House Proposals I schmudget I 03-11-2010
The headline in The Seattle Times "State spending on track to rise, despite budget
cuts" is a misleading way of looking at the state budget situation. If
you’ve been following the budget debate, you know that both the Senate
and House budgets propose deep cuts to education, health care, economic
security, and so on. State spending – from money the state collects –
would actually fall under the two budget proposals. The article adds
anticipated federal aid to state spending in order to reach the
conclusion that the budget would increase.
State Government Size Remains Steady
Over Last 25 Years — It’s Rising Costs That Are The Problem I Olympia
Newswire I 03-13-2010
The number of government employees in
Washington state, as a percentage of the population, has remained
relatively constant for the last quarter century. Yes, the size of
government has grown. But the population also grew by 50 percent, from
4.4 million to 6.7 million residents. Government’s size, in relation to
the state’s population, is remarkably steady.
House Lifts Tax Exemption On Candy I KUOW I 03-12-2010
House lawmakers have approved a sales tax on candy and gum. Initially, the idea was for the money to help pay for public health programs around the state. However, if revenue from that and other new taxes wins approval of both the House and Senate, it may be going to the state's general fund instead. It's one of the details that lawmakers will sort out when the Legislature goes into special session.
New study links soda tax to better health I HorsesAss.org I 03-15-2010
As legislators prepare to close Washington’s $2.6 billion budget gap, partially by imposing a tax on carbonated beverages, a new scientific study confirms the obvious… that taxing soft drinks can make young people healthier.
Opinion: Lawmakers must take action now to stop the epidemic of obesity I The Olympian I 03-13-2010
As longtime medical and public health professionals, we have both walked the talk by working to provide access to health care and tools to live healthier lives. Our Legislature is in the midst of a public debate about who and what to cut because of our state’s budget shortfall. We truly hope they consider a smart and much needed tax policy that would benefit so many in Washington and raise new revenue at the same time. In fact, this policy would cut nearly a tenth from the $2.8 billion shortfall.
Opinion: It's past time to fix state's tax system I The Herald I 03-13-2010
Isn't it time we stop the political games around taxes and start seeing them as a necessary part of our common life and learn to create them and manage them equitably, smartly and well? Isn't it time we finally get over the burdensome tax history in our state and fix the tax system?
What kids in poverty really need | Seattle Times I 03-15-2010
People who wind up in Washington's child- welfare system are often beset by "profound deprivation." Mark Courtney, whose organization conducted a study of the system, told me the depth of poverty has been a surprise even to people who regularly deal with child welfare. Data from a new study shows half of those families had problems securing housing, some were homeless, and two-thirds were so broke they needed food stamps.
Seattle Boy Whose Mother Died Without Health Insurance: 'Get The Health Care Bill Passed' I Huffington Post I 03-12-2010
Marcelas Owens, an 11-year-old from Seattle, headlined a press conference with Senate Democratic leadership late last week, telling a packed room of reporters that he wanted the president and Congress to come together and pass health insurance reform.
The Obesity-Hunger Paradox I NYTimes.com I 03-14-2010
When most people think of hunger in America, the images that leap to mind are of ragged toddlers in Appalachia or rail-thin children in dingy apartments reaching for empty bottles of milk. Once, maybe. But a recent survey found that the most severe hunger-related problems in the nation are in the South Bronx, long one of the country’s capitals of obesity.
Texting to a healthy delivery I baltimoresun.com I 03-15-2010
A new national health initiative aims to keep expectant moms on track for a healthy pregnancy through nuggets of advice via text message. The Baltimore Sun reports that text4baby aims to cut down on the high number of premature births both across the country, with free messages about all things pregnancy, from tips on good nutrition to how to find a health care provider. The program, sponsored by the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition, has already rolled out in Maryland with more than 18,000 women signed up so far.
House passes landmark early education bill I Kirkland Views I 03-11-2010
A new law by Rep. Roger Goodman (D-Kirkland) will change the face of preschool in our state. “When the governor signs this reform into law, it will be a victory for children and the parents who fought to make this happen,” said Goodman, himself the father of two young children. House Bill 2731 will expand quality preschool across the state and secure early learning as a new state entitlement program.
'If you want to reform high school, you need to reform early childhood' I Birth to Thrive Online I 03-11-2010
Congress has begun debating how to revamp the No Child Left Behind Act and one of the nation’s newest superintendents has an idea lawmakers should keep in mind: Education reform begins with child care, preschool and prekindergarten.