Washington State lawmakers announced in early May the possibility of a budget crisis over the next few years. The cause of this fiscal emergency stems from the COVID-19 pandemic; with the shutdown of Washington and closure of many businesses, this is something they saw coming.
Democratic Senator and Chairman of the Economic Recovery Committee, David Frockt, predicted a few things in an interview on “The Impact,” such as “Unemployment is going to be high until 2021.” As well, thousands of entrepreneurs will continue to struggle amid the pandemic. He later states that the road to recovery involves following phase guidelines, stimulating growth, and creating a healthcare system available to everyone. That way, people who lost their jobs can get medical assistance.
Republican Officer and challenger for governor, Loren Culp, has a different approach. He says the way to help Washington is to end phase guidelines and open all businesses. Culp says that the everyday person knows how to social distance and doesn’t need their business closed down. He also suggests the way out of this budget crisis is to stop making across the board budget cuts, and instead look at what Washington state is spending money on, and cut what we can, keep what we can’t.
Lawmakers predicted that tax collections might reduce the budget impact in June, possibly enough to cut the projected $9 billion deficit in half; however, we won’t know more until January when they return to Olympia.
For more information about the road to recovery, visit TVW.org/shows/the-impact.