Everett Memorial Stadium and Funko Field on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Everett Memorial Stadium and Funko Field on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

A ballpark, a trestle and a recovery center score in House budgets

House Democrats put out operating, capital and transportation spending plans. They’ll need to negotiate with Senate Democrats

OLYMPIA — House Democrats released a trio of budgets Monday with their priorities for spending of billions of dollars the next two years on government services, the transportation system and supporting community organizations.

Dig through the pages and one will find a bevy of Snohomish County projects made the cut.

There’s $17 million in the transportation budget to rev up design work on a new westbound U.S. 2 trestle. It’s a down payment on a $210 million commitment chiseled into the Move Ahead transportation package last year.

A $13.6 million allocation will outfit Washington State Patrol commissioned officers and commercial vehicle enforcement officers with body worn cameras and give troopers better tasers.

There’s $7.4 million in the capital budget to help Everett in its quest to site and build a new ballpark for the AquaSox. That matches the sum contained in the Senate plan approved Friday.

Elsewhere in the same document is a $1.3 million grant for the Community Recovery Center in Lynnwood. This could be one of the final pieces of funding.

And, in the operating budget, $3.6 million is earmarked for providing involuntary treatment services in the proposed 32-bed residential treatment facility in Stanwood. A conditional use permit issued by the Snohomish County hearing examiner is currently under appeal.

Those are among the multitude of pieces comprising House Democrats’ proposed operating, capital and transportation budgets for the fiscal period that begins July 1. Senate Democrats are crafting their own versions. Budget writers in each chamber will need to reconcile differences before the session’s scheduled end April 23.

A rendering of the proposed Community Justice Center in Lynnwood, which would house a new jail, a misdemeanor court, the police department and behavioral health services. (City of Lynnwood)

A rendering of the proposed Community Justice Center in Lynnwood, which would house a new jail, a misdemeanor court, the police department and behavioral health services. (City of Lynnwood)

In the operating budget, House Democrats are proposing to spend $69.5 billion plus $316 million from the sale of carbon emission allowances and unspent federal pandemic relief dollars. There will be roughly $3.2 billion in total reserves.

Those numbers mirror what Senate Democrats rolled out last week. There are differences, however. The most significant is House Democrats embraced Gov. Jay Inslee’s $4 billion bond proposal and Senate Democrats did not.

The proposal requires voter approval and is intended to raise a large sum more quickly than can be generated through a biennial budget process.

The House plan contains a smidgen of money to cover expenses in the coming budget and $55 million to pay off debt service in the cycle beginning July 2027.

House Majority Leader Joe Fitzgibbon, D-Burien said the caucus wants to see a greater level of affordable housing undertaken and this could be the means. He said by putting it in the budget, it keeps the issue alive “up to the end of session.”

Another point of contention will be the level of funding for special education services in public schools.The House put in $179 million where the Senate tallied closer to $372 million.

Neither the House or Senate budgets propose new taxes.

But the House does count on $150 million from an increase in the document recording fee. Those monies will fund the Covenant Homeownership Program intended to assist populations whose ability to buy homes had been hampered historically by discriminatory lending practices and redlining.

Also Monday, House Democrats put out an $8.3 billion capital budget containing money for the ballpark and the Community Recovery Center. There’s also $75,000 for the Imagine Children’s Museum in Everett, $10,000 for South Whidbey Sports Complex Pickleball Courts and $303,000 for ball field lighting at Willis Tucker Community Park in Snohomish.

The last plan put out Monday was the $13.6 billion transportation budget.

The M/V Puyallup docks at the Edmonds waterfront on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020 in Edmonds, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

The M/V Puyallup docks at the Edmonds waterfront on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020 in Edmonds, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Of the total, nearly $1.3 billion is earmarked for Washington State Ferries operation and construction of four new boats.

For example, there’s $45 million to convert all three of the Jumbo Mark II class of vessels to hybrid-electric propulsion. Those boats serve the Edmonds/Kingston and the Bainbridge Island routes. Another $19 million is allotted for installing electric charging capabilities at four terminals, including Mukilteo.

Washington State Patrol fares well. The budget not only covers body cameras. Money is provided to give $10,000 hiring bonuses to cadets and $15,000 to lateral transfers from other law enforcement agencies. And the department would get two Cessna aircraft replaced.

Details on each budget can be found online at fiscal.wa.gov. Comparisons with proposed Senate budgets are available too.

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @dospueblos.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Students arriving off the bus get in line to score some waffles during a free pancake and waffle breakfast at Lowell Elementary School on Friday, May 26, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
800 free pancakes at Everett’s Lowell Elementary feed the masses

The annual breakfast was started to connect the community and the school, as well as to get people to interact.

Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring speaks at the groundbreaking event for the I-5/SR 529 Interchange project on Tuesday, May 23, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$123M project starting on Highway 529 interchange, I-5 HOV lane

A reader wondered why the highway had a lane closure despite not seeing work done. Crews were waiting on the weather.

Justin Bell was convicted earlier this month of first-degree assault for a December 2017 shooting outside a Value Village in Everett. (Caleb Hutton / Herald file)
Court: Snohomish County jurors’ opaque masks didn’t taint verdict

During the pandemic, Justin Bell, 32, went on trial for a shooting. Bell claims his right to an impartial jury was violated.

Gary Fontes uprights a tree that fell over in front of The Fontes Manor — a miniature handmade bed and breakfast — on Friday, May 12, 2023, at his home near Silver Lake in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Everett’s mini-Frank Lloyd Wright builds neighborhood of extra tiny homes

A tiny lighthouse, a spooky mansion and more: Gary Fontes’ miniature world of architectural wonders is one-twelfth the size of real life.

Will Steffener
Inslee appoints Steffener as Superior Court judge

Attorney Will Steffener will replace Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Janice Ellis, who is retiring in June.

News logo for use with stories about Mill Creek in Snohomish County, WA.
Police: Mill Creek man fatally stabbed wife amid financial woes

After quitting his job at Amazon, the man amassed about $50,000 in debt, triggering a discussion about finances, he told police.

Outside of the current Evergreen Recovery Centers' housing to treat opioid-dependent moms with their kids on Thursday, May 25, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$8M in behavioral health grants to benefit children, youth, families

Snohomish County awarded one-time federal funding to five projects that will reach at least 440 new people each year.

A PUD vehicle drives along Lovers Road under newly-erected power poles that will eventually connect Stanwood and Camano Island on Tuesday, May 30, 2023, in Stanwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
To keep Camano lights on, PUD builds a new power line

The new line establishes a second electrical connection to Camano Island, which will help maintain power in windstorms.

Highway 9 is set to be closed in both directions for a week as construction crews build a roundabout at the intersection with Vernon Road. (Washington State Department of Transportation)
Weeklong closure coming to Highway 9 section in Lake Stevens

Travelers should expect delays or find another way from Friday to Thursday between Highway 204 and Lundeen Parkway.

Most Read