Governor Gregoire delivered her “State of the State” address to a packed chamber of legislators, statewide elected officials, Supreme Court justices, three former Governors and a myriad of other dignataries in Olympia this evening. Among much pomp and circumstance, the Governor was greeted by several minutes of enthusiastic applause and cheers from the assembled Senators and Representatives as well as a packed throng in the upper gallerys.
As advertised, the address was centered around her major budget and policy priority for the 2007 session: education. A number of items important to the University of Washington were highlighted in her 45 minute address including funding for high demand enrollments; expansion of medical and dental education in Spokane; and funding to support global health.
She also touted her proposed Washington Learns tuition policy which would cap undergraduate tuition rates at 7% at the UW and WSU, at 5% at the regional institutions and freezing tuition rates at current levels for the community and technical colleges. She also stressed the critical role the UW and WSU play in driving the state economy.