5.6 billion dollar deficit suugested cuts

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    that medical insurance you thought you had?

    i hope you still do.

    maybe 1098 was a better idea than you thought.



    I think the original post was about the state budget deficit, so maybe we should focus on that… here’s a link to the Gov’s budget website:


    Hooper, since you used the figure of 1-2% of students using a disproportionate percentage of resources without a high enough outcome, I assume you are not referring to all special ed students but to those whose disabilities are so severe that they will likely never function independently or even with support. This is a very complex issue, but I have similar concerns about the amount of money involved. However, there is a federal mandate that the state must meet and I doubt the state has much leeway. Besides, from a practical standpoint, any reduction would be immediately challenged in court.

    As far as your global statement about who private employers provide health insurance to, you are only partially correct. Some private employers provide only for the employee while others cover the entire family at no cost and every other option imbetween. However, I would agree that state employees get a very generous benefits package and that would be one place to look for cost savings; the best way is to involve the unions in the decision-making, but time is short.




    i am guessing you either don’t remember that the state employees already took a substantial pay cut or that you don’t care.

    why is it when cuts are mentioned..

    it’s always employees and beneficiaries who are the first target?

    heaven forbid we should go after the corporation draining our treasuries dry.



    I think we should go back and look at the point of Boeing paying their fair share. Add to that list Microsoft, Amazon, Weyerhaeuser, and Brown & Root. All of these companies and many more get a free pass on taxes because of the race to the bottom bidding war they have with other states. The excuse is that they create jobs. That is complete BS. They create money. All corporations have a main goal to create wealth for the shareholders. Non profit, for profit, whatever. They are all in the business to make money. If they can not do that while paying taxes, then they need to adjust something.

    I also want to address this post: “i run a small business dependent on internet. thanks to the state increasing the b & o tax i cut my employees hours. my cable is basic that would be less costly if taxes on it were less.

    what inflation? costs have been relatively flat for several years. “

    1. You did not cut employees hours because of B&O taxes. No you didn’t.

    2. Yes cable would be cheaper if it had less taxes on it. So would booze. What is the point there?

    3. what inflation? costs have been relatively flat for several years. Are you kidding me?!?! The cost of Gas, wheat, sugar, dairy, meat, steel, iron, oil, manganese, everything has gone up over the past several years. Does it cost as much to fill your tank as it did several years ago?

    I think the Federal government should pay for health care. All of it. I also think they should flip the bill for education too. K through PHD. Where would all of this money come from? How could we possibly figure out how to pay for all of this? We can pay for a war on multiple fronts, we can sure as hell pay for our own citizens. 720 million a day in Iraq, 400 million in Afghanistan. A day. Every day. If we can find a way to spend that, we can find a way to spend it on health care and education. The only thing stopping it is ourselves. And conservatives. They stop it because war makes a lot of money. A whole lot of money. How much do you think Boeing has made of this war? Halliburton? GE? The Bush family? Obama?

    Why is it that every other country out there can find a way to pay for health care, not try to colonize every continent, not get attacked by terrorists, not invade other countries but we can not? Even Australia, who’s only exports are sheep and Men at Work, can manage to pay for health care and education for its people.



    full tilt: very well-said.

    yes, it’s funny that cable is expensive, and that’s the government’s fault. it can’t possibly have anything to do with comcast getting a sweetheart monopoly deal from us, the people. or their big, bloated advertising budget.

    there are at least a couple of republicans here in the forums who flatly admit that the only reason business has tightened up in the u.s. is because obama is in the white house. i.e. wall street is not creating capital for smaller business and the top 2% are not creating jobs for the middle and lower classes until they get their “tax cuts.” it’s basically a temper tantrum.

    and if hooper’s theory is correct, microsoft should be hiring like crazy. instead, they’re laying people off.

    meanwhile, they’re proving that trickle down doesn’t work for everyone; and at a time when tax rates are at historic lows and tax incentives are at all-time highs. the administration is providing all kinds of opportunities for big business to stimultate the economy, and big business refuses to do so until the new deal is rolled back.

    gee, thanks.

    as for hooper, you should look into taking advantage of some of the programs that congress and the administration have started to help small businesses.

    if you stop and consider all of the facts, hooper, government didn’t cause this mess, but they are charged with cleaning it up. (well, republican “governance” caused it: slash regulation, break government, loot the treasury, blame democrats. rinse. lather. repeat.) we, the people, get the bill, big business gets record profits and no tax burden, and our jobs get off-shored.

    i actually think obama might be a genius. by running up the deficit, he has made the GOP rank-and-file decry everything that republicans themselves have done for the past 30 years to break the economy. so don’t count him out yet, righties. in secret, wall street loves obama, and they’re laughing all the way to the treasury.



    JoB — do you feel a need to attack everyone who disagrees with you or says something you don’t like? We are beyond a point where cuts can be made and no one feels any ill effects — people will be hurt by the cuts. If this were a private company, there would be no discussion; there would simply be wholesale layoffs, wage cuts and benefit reductions.

    Also, I was talking about benefits, not pay. If by ‘substantial pay cut’ you are referring to furlough days, yes I remember, but I don’t consider that to be a substantial cut. A hardship for some, yes, but losing 8 hours pay out of 160 in a month doesn’t seem substantial. I also seem to remember that the state unions fought it tooth and nail, incl. filing suit.

    I worked for the county when furlough days were mandated; everyone I know managed to survive and even enjoy the extra days off. Of course, some citizens were upset that services weren’t available, but then they probably voted for Eyman’s initiatives.

    But since you raised the issue of salaries, one way to keep people employed is to reduce everyones’ hours; King County employees voted to do that a number of years ago during another budget crisis so that fellow employees wouldn’t be laid off. Work days were cut from 8 to 7 hours and no one was laid off.

    Why don’t you come up with a concrete suggestion on where the state can cut, oh say, $500 million from their budget. Or where they can eliminate a specific tax exemption without running afoul of the newly passed Eyman initiative?



    Wonder how much the state can save if they print and record everything in ONE (English) language only!



    That was predictable, brew . . .

    Compromise suggestion: We could take a look at where we get the most value out language translation services and keep those, while cutting the translation where we get the least value from it.

    President Obama announced a pay freeze for federal workers today.


    We could do the same thing at the state level, if it hasn’t been done already. Freezing spending and salaries is a good first step, because it doesn’t hurt people as much as taking away something they already have. Unfortunately, we are still going to need to cut somewhere.



    I can tell you that there have been no pay increases or COLAS for the past couple of years. And I agree that many employees took their jobs were the pay wasn’t fantastic, because the benefits were good.



    Thank you Tanya – you tell it like it is.

    For the others yelling to cut state employee wages: How about a few FACTS before we start in on all state employees, huh? (purposely anonymizing details to protect my family member — sorry if it makes anything confusing.)

    My [family member] works for the state. With multiple higher-level degrees, >$150k in student loan debt, and will TOP OUT OF ALL PAY RANGES for the job at less than $60k. Do the math. That’s the equivalent of a mortgage in student loan debt, none of it forgivable – thanks Dubya, ya POS, for shooting that bill down.

    What does [family member] do? Oh, only the easiest job ever. The big, cushy, job EVERYONE wants: [family member] works for DSHS trying to help heal and repair broken families all day long. Yeah, that’s one cushy-a$$ job, isn’t it? Seeing kids who’ve been abused time and time again and watching helplessly as [family member’s]careful documentation is ignored by yet another judge who decides that rich people should be allowed to break half the bones in that baby’s body and still keep him. And then? Then KOMO and 90% of you all out there blame [family member] when that baby is killed. Sounds like a pretty great job, huh?

    No raises for at least the last three years. [family member] got a small promotion and raise last year, and it’s long gone – and then some – because of the mandatory furloughs. [family member] has more responsibility and works harder, and is paid less for it. In fact, [family member] works approximately 80-90 hours a week for that cushy <60k salary, but isn’t allowed to claim OT due to a recent lawsuit the state lost for not paying OT to workers. Instead, they’re now required to take “flex time” — which never gets used because “we can’t spare you today” or “I know you’re off today but we have an emergency – can you make some calls?” Sounding better and better??

    So, cut the effing governor’s salary. Cut the higher-level administrators — god knows there are hundreds of them making bank to sit on their a$$es while others actually work. But leave the line workers alone. They’ve already given their lives, and their families’ lives, to try to make a small difference in just one kid. Don’t take away the pittance they’re paid.

    Oh, and that great insurance? They just went Group Health HMO. No out of network (GH only) coverage, and the benefits are worse than my own corporate job. $40 for generic prescriptions is the LOWEST tier. Most prescriptions are not formulary, so we pay 50% of full price. Or more. On the aforementioned salary. With a mortgage worth of student loans.

    Get a different job, you say? Nobody wants to hire a gov’t worker with long term experience. They think those gov’t workers are lazy and used to their cushy jobs and won’t really work hard. If only they knew.



    Sorry if I sound bitter. The job is a calling, nf as such is both it’s own reward and punishment. And if one single child is saved it’s worth it. That child may go on to cure cancer or stop war or solve the budget crisis ;-)

    Sometimes, though, it’s really hard to stand by and watch a person you love being beaten down over and over again because so many can’t be saved, and then turn around and hear the general public’s opinion that the job is oh so cushy and should have more pay cuts.

    It’s a little bit too close to the heart.




    let’s get some perspective here.

    making state workers take the brunt of the current financial crisis is an attack of personal proportions to people who know and love someone who depends upon that salary and those health benefits to make ends meet.

    Moving the health care of our state workers out of an insurance plan and into the state’s emergency rooms is not a money saving option.. even in the short run. You pay for those services with every health care premium and co-pay.

    beyond that, state worker’s salaries move right back into our local economy which generates sales tax income.

    Cutting jobs in this economy is not the smartest move for a state that depends upon sales tax revenue for income.

    I am sorry you feel attacked.. but to be honest.. i have been holding my punches with this entire subject…

    you really don’t want to know what i really think about the stupidity and selfishness of those who defeated 1098 and now expect the least among us to shoulder the burden for their misguided self-serving choices.

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