Baumgartner Aiming to Restore and Protect Higher-Education Funds - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Baumgartner Aiming to Restore and Protect Higher-Education Funding

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OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Legislation introduced this week in Olympia aims to restore and protect higher-education funding.

Senator Michael Baumgartner introduced two pieces of legislation, supporting higher-education.

Senate Bill 5963 would dedicate 15% of the current state sales tax collected to higher education, generating an estimated $2.36 billion for the 2013-15 budget cycle. Washington's public colleges and universities receive about $2.1 billion in the two-year budget that expires June 30.

The measure is similar to legislation Baumgartner proposed in 2012, which did not make it to a public hearing.

He also introduced Senate Joint Resolution 8209, which would ask voters to amend the state constitution to make funding for higher education the state's second highest priority, next to K-12 education.

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