As a City Councilman, Mark focused on funding basic services first. As our State Representative, he will do the same and work for a prioritized budget with fiscal restraint.
Mark will make school funding a priority and not a budget bargaining chip. The Washington State Supreme Court clearly wrote in McCleary et al. v. State of Washington "Fundamental reforms are needed for Washington to meet its constitutional obligation to its students." This means;
*Fund education first in the budgeting process. Give education its own line item in the budget, just as we do for transportation and healthcare.
*Fund and expand Skills Centers across the state and focus on high demand job opportunities.
*Allow more flexibility with credits to make it easier to transfer from community colleges into other higher ed institutions.
Our current State government has been borrowing money for short term non-essential projects and reducing the amount of money left to pay for our essential services. This means there is less money for our schools, public safety and transportation.
We need to fund education first and prioritize our spending on public safety to protect those most vunerable in our communities.