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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I am sending this email update on the last day of the 2024 legislative session. Yesterday, the state House of Representatives and Senate unanimously passed a supplemental capital budget.

Although it is only a supplemental spending plan, it includes much-needed infrastructure projects and improvements throughout the communities in the 4th Legislative District and Washington state.

Critical in this budget is almost $1 million for the Gray and Oregon Road fire recovery. We must continue to help folks work through this long-term recovery after the devastation they have suffered.

I am also pleased that the Seven Nations Healing Lodge funding is included in the budget. This will expand community-based behavioral health services. I plan to tour the facility this interim with Rep. Debra Lekanoff, D-Anacortes. I also want to thank her for her work on this issue as well.

House capital budget projects for the 4th District include:

  • $4.7 million for the Kaiser Aluminum boiler replacement;
  • $2 million for the Seven Nations Healing Lodge youth expansion;  
  • $1 million for Broadway Senior Housing;
  • $975,000 for Gray and Oregon Road forest fire recovery;
  • $300,000 for the Spokane Scale House Market and Kitchen;
  • $258,000 for a playground at Intersection Preschool and Daycare;
  • $150,000 for the Spokane Valley Cross Country Course; and
  • $32,000 for the W. Valley Centennial Middle School field, fences and dugout.

This budget is a return on investment as it returns taxpayer dollars back to our communities. I want folks in the district to be aware of the benefits and projects supported by their tax dollars in our neighborhoods, schools, environment and so much more.

The capital budget spends $1.33 billion and significantly invests in K-12 school construction, behavioral health and substance abuse treatment facilities, housing, and early learning facilities.

Some of the additional highlights include:

K-12 school construction

  • Grants for Small District & Tribal Compact Schools Modernization
    • $114.8 million for the Small District and Tribal Compact Schools Modernization program, which provides planning and construction grants for school districts with fewer than 1,000 students with significant building deficiencies.
  • School Construction Assistance Program
    • $79.2 million for an increase to the Construction Cost Allocation, used to determine maximum recognized state cost per square foot of construction in the School Construction Assistance Program.
  • Health and Safety
    • $45 million to improve school districts’ indoor air quality and energy efficiency, with much of the grant funds going to school districts with 3,000 enrollments or fewer.
    • $8.1 million for additional emergency, urgent, and equal access grants for school districts.
    • $1.5 million for additional Healthy Kids-Healthy Schools grants for nutritional and physical equipment grants.

Behavioral health and substance abuse treatment

  • $82.7 million for grants to community behavioral health projects across the state.

Housing

  • $127.5 million for the Housing Trust Fund, including:
    • $20 million for homeownership opportunities.
    • $19 million for housing for those with developmental disabilities.
    • $15 million for the acquisition and preservation of mobile homes.

Department of Commerce community grant programs

  • $26.7 million for the Early Learning Facilities grant program to expand access to affordable childcare.

The capital budget now goes to the governor for his signature.

I will send out another email update in the next few days with an overview of the 2024 session. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.


Suzanne Schmidt

State Representative Suzanne Schmidt, 4th Legislative District
representativesuzanneschmidt.com
468 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
suzanne.schmidt@leg.wa.gov
(360) 786-7820 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000