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Media Digest 6-24-2010

Anonymous (not verified) 06/24/10

In this edition, you’ll find articles on Gov. Gregoire’s ideas to combat revenue shortfalls driven by the lingering recession with government reforms and budget overhauls. The state is facing another budget cycle with a projected $3 billion deficit. You’ll also find stories on options state lawmakers are considering if federal Medicaid funds are not approved and an executive order signed by Gregoire to improve access to healthier foods for Washington residents. 

 

Gov. Gregoire seeks reforms, budget overhauls I Associated Press I 06-24-2010
Gov. Gregoire says it's time to rethink the way government operates, because it could be a long time before tax streams rebound to pre-recession levels. The state is looking at another budget cycle of major deficits, as tax collections continue to drag following the Great Recession. Gregoire and Democratic legislative leaders cut about $12 billion from the current two-year budget to balance the books. But the next two-year budget is already facing a projected shortfall of about $3 billion.
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Gregoire talks tough on a new budgeting approach I Crosscut I 06-23-2010
State lawmakers explore Medicaid options to try to plug potential $200 million budget hole I Seattle PostGlobe I 06-22-2010
With Congressional approval of additional FMAP (Medicaid) funds still in question, the state House Ways and Means Committee met earlier this week to explore the options available to balance the budget if the funds aren't approved.
Gregoire signs order to improve state food policy I Associated Press I 06-22-2010
Gov. Chris Gregoire has signed an executive order directing state agencies to work with several groups to improve access to healthier foods for Washington residents. The governor says the order will help identify gaps in the state's food system that prevents nutritious food from reaching all residents.
 
Food grown by kids could become school staple - Washington State | Tri-City Herald I 06-19-2010
As the local food movement grows, schoolyard gardens are becoming nearly as ubiquitous in Washington public schools as, well, standardized tests. So it only makes sense that some of the homegrown grub makes it on to the lunch line.
Only Seven States Conduct School Readiness Assessment, New Study Finds I Birth to Thrive I 06-22-2010
School readiness is one of the bigger topics in early learning today. But, it turns out only seven states actually assess students when they start school to get an idea of statewide trends, a new report found. One study found that the average cognitive scores of our nation’s most affluent children are 60 percent higher than those of our poorest children before they enter kindergarten. Quality early learning programs seek to narrow and eliminate this achievement gap.
Four Governors Want Their Say On Health Care Lawsuit I KUOW I 06-24-2010
Washington Governor Chris Gregoire and three other governors want to take part in the legal fight over the recently passed health care bill. Last march, 13 attorneys general, including Washington's Rob McKenna, sued to block the law. Yesterday Gregoire and the governors of Michigan, Colorado and Pennsylvania asked a federal court to allow them to join the lawsuit.
From silly to serious, initiative efforts abound | Seattle Times I 06-22-2010
But the number of statewide initiatives filed for the November ballot is at an all-time high. And at least a half-dozen are expected to make it before voters, including a proposed income tax on high-wage earners, a repeal of taxes on soda, bottled water and candy, and at least one proposal to privatize state liquor sales.