State Relations

March 21, 2007

House Appropriations Committee to Work Late

As of 7:00 p.m. tonight, House Appropriations Committee members are still behind closed door caucus meetings trying to decide which amendments to offer on the House Democrat’s operating budget proposal which was released yesterday.  Even after that decision is made, committee members must caucus again to insure they know how members will vote on each amendment.

This means we are in for a late evening as the Appropriations Committee works to pass the 2007-09 biennial budget so that it can be considered this Friday on the floor of the House.

The UW is keenly interested in at least two changes to the budget released yesterday.  First, we are hoping the committee will restore $1 million in funding to the WWAMI/RIDE budget request to bring the total allocation back to the $4.5 million originally requested by the University and which was included in the Governor’s budget.

Second, all higher education institutions are seeking a technical change to the compensation section of the budget bill which would insure the ability of higher education entities to have maximum flexibility in using salary funding for faculty and other non-representated employees.  This language has been included in the last several biennial budgets but appears to have been inadvertently left out of the House Appropriations Committee proposed budget bill.