Gregoire: Lawmakers Need To Be 'Bold' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Gregoire: Lawmakers Need To Be 'Bold'

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Gov. Chris Gregoire says the Legislature needs to be bold as it tackles a state budget that is billions in the red and the state faces a moribund economy.

In her State of the State address Tuesday, the Democratic governor tells a joint session of the House and Senate that lawmakers need to remake how state government works, not just cut services to balance the budget. She also says voters sent a clear message not to raise taxes.

Gregoire reiterated her proposals to create a Department of Education and change the state ferry system into a regional operation. Gregoire also wants to repeal automatic increases in pension plan benefits and cut more than $1 billion from unemployment insurance and workers compensation costs.

The Legislature began its 105-day session on Monday in Olympia.
      
      (Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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