State Relations

2008 Interim

December 8, 2008

Senate Committee Chairs Named

Senate Democrats have announced their committee lineup and chairs for the upcoming session.  In the biggest change affecting higher education, the Higher Education Committee has been renamed “Higher Education and Workforce Development” with Sen. Derek Kilmer of Gig Harbor taking the chairmanship.  Former Chair Sen. Paull Shin will lead a new subcommittee on International Relations. …

December 5, 2008

Assembly Update, part 2

Earlier this year the University announced the creation of a new College of the Environment, designed to draw together a number of degree programs and to serve as a hub for multidisciplinary education and research on environmental issues. Yesterday the Senate Natural Resources, Ocean and Recreation Committee took up how the creation of the new…

December 4, 2008

Assembly update

President Emmert was in Olympia Wednesday meeting with a number of key lawmakers as members gathered for the Legislative Assembly. He also met Thursday with Governor Gregoire for an in-depth discussion of the issues facing higher education. On the hill, besides a full slate of committee hearings, plenty of time was allocated to meetings to…

December 2, 2008

Clearing up a cloud of dust

“Three yards and a cloud of dust” is an old football saying, originally used to describe Ohio State’s offense under Woody Hayes. It could also apply to some of the debate over the University’s proposal to renovate Husky Stadium which continues to move forward, but not without some dust getting thrown up in the process….

December 1, 2008

Lawmakers back in Olympia

It’s Legislative Assembly week and there will be no shortage of discussion about the state’s big shortage of cash. This marks the first time since the election and the most recent revenue forecast that lawmakers have gathered in Olympia for a full slate of committee hearings. Given the growing budget problems facing the state, the…

November 19, 2008

More on This Morning’s Revenue Forecast

OFM Director Victor Moore just told the press that they will have to go back out to state agencies to find additional reductions for this biennium.  That’s because with the projected loss of $500 million in 2007-09, the state is now likely in the “red” in the current fiscal year.  This could mean more reductions…

Houston, We Have a Problem

In blogging live right now listening to the meeting of the state’s Revenue Forecast Council in Olympia. Dr. Arun Raha, the state’s chief economist just announced that the state revenue forecast is being adjusted downward by $1.9 billion over the next three years.  That’s right, I said $1.9 billion. This is comprised of a loss…

November 14, 2008

State Legislative Election Results Update

Here’s the latest information I have on the state legislative races. In the state Senate, no real change from last week’s update.  The Democrats appear to have lost one seat with the Republicans gaining one for a 31-18 split.  In the 2nd legislative district (SE Pierce County) longtime Democratic incumbent Marilyn Rasmussen has been defeated by…

November 13, 2008

Bad “Budget” Moon Rising?

At the risk of continuing to beat the bad budget news horse to death, here are a few news items that portend nasty state economic news on the horizon. State sales tax collections are down below last year as this news item reports in today’s Seattle P-I. Andrew Garber from the Seattle Times reports that the…

November 12, 2008

Third Party Validation

Here’s an excellent argument for the importance of continuing to support higher education in these exceedingly troubled financial times from Susannah Malarky, Executive Director of the Washington Tech Alliance. Always nice to hear others express support for what we are all about here at the UW.

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