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Cheney Free Press
Cheney , Washington
July 9, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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July 9, 2015

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CHENEY FREE PRESS Thursday, July 9, 2015 It should be noted that, next door neighbors, local But in this often Uber- while the budgetis the most business leaders and entre- partisan climate, we wonder important document in the preneurs and not full-time, if the budgeting process odd-year session, it's not professional politicians, would turn less seripus as Being a state legislator the only thing legislators We have the latter in that either side postures to their is a thankless job - almost travel to Olympia to accom- other Washington back east. respective extremes in order as bad as being a Hoopfest plish. Before the numbers But something does need to preserve voter support court monitor. And even more so this session what with the Legislature need- ing not only the four-month regular session but also two overtime special sessions and a last-minute, late-night negotiating meeting to pass the $38.2 billion 2015-2017 operating budget. And even then, appar- ently not all the work is fin- ished as the whole package could unravel over funding, or not funding, K-12 class- room-reduction initiative 1351. We'll know how the state Senate deals with this issue in the coming days or weeks. Much has been written and lamented over regard- ing the length of this latest session, and how the budget has been derived and nego- tiated. Legislators usually don't get down to serious number crunching until after state revenue projec- tions are released late in the session in March. work begins, our represen- tatives are engaged in writ- ing legislation and even- tually holding committee hearings and floor votes on bills that deal with how our state is run, including items pertaining to the yet to be fixed budget. This past session, law- makers passed a nine-page list of bills that dealt with everything from relating or prohibiting unfair and deceptive dental insur- ance practices to biotoxin testing and monitoring to marine fuel tax refunds, transit agency coordination, charity supporter tax relief and the Washington State Health Care Exchange. Those who travel to Olympia to meet with their legislators during session know how busy they are, and how precious their time can be. And while we sometimes complain about what we pay them, let's remember they are still our to be done about how the budgeting process works. It's not fair to those who rely on those numbers in order to produce their own budgets under state-man- dated time regulations, such as state agencies, school districts and universities, to have to play the guessing game in hopes of getting it right. It affects everyone down- stream, such as cities and counties, who also rely on solid budgeting figures to make their own plans for the future. Some have suggested the budget process needs to be more transparent. With ne- gotiations out in the open, there would be less reneg- ing on promises and agree- ments and counter claims about what is in or isn't in the budget proposals. Transparency is always good in a democracy. It provides public account- ability. during election seas Another way mig] stagger the session i Members could mee January to February needed, non-budget islation, take a brea! 3n. it be to tself. from to pass leg- her in March when revenue num- bers are released, ar}d then return in April - aOd April only - to hash outbudget details. This proposal might still crimp the budgeting pro- cess for those other ggen- cies, and how legislators could be limited to only April remains to be seen. In the end, perhaps the best way to reduce the length of legislative ses- sions and arrive at state budgets earlier is to re- mind our representatives that successful negotiations aren t about how firmly one stands on ones ideology, but how readily one is to compromise on ideqlogy in favor of the bigger picture benefiting everyone. : Ii" i i: Write to the Point iday w was perfect time to reconnect, flect By PAUL DELANEY Staff Reporter What a great weekend. The just passed Fourth of July holiday served up a perfect menu of generous portions of family and friends topped off Paul Delaney by time to dial life down just a little from the hectic pace it had been on recently. It wasn't totally without sweat, however. I got to check off the big project, finishing the moving of the final dozen wheelbarrows of river rock - the last of 6,000 pounds dumped in my driveway - into the backyard and hopefully make one mbre flower bed a zero mainte- nance zone. There was another bo- nus: I even found the top of my workbench in the garage after finding the FREE PRESS Vol. 119-No. 12 Press Production Manager Randy Warwick Mailroom Supervisor Bryce Ryen Pressman Mark Cordes Sales Steve Barge DeeAnn Gibb Front Office Dawn Chernak Rachel Stuart Editor John McCallum Reporters Paul Delaney AI Stover Graphics Brittani Montecucco John Myers Bookkeeper/Office .Manager Debi Labish Publisher Harlan Shellabarger The Editorial Board is composed of Paul Delaney, A1 Stover, Brittani Montecucco, John McCallum and Harlan Shellabarger The Cheney Free Press is published every Thursday by the Free Press Publish- ing Company, William Ifft, president. Periodical post- age paid at Cheney, Wash. 99004. Published at 1616 W. First Street, Cheney, Wash. 99004. POSTMASTER: Send The Free Press re- quests that contributors observe the following dead- lines, which will be strictly enforced: address changes to: Cheney Free Press, P.O. Box 218, Cheney, Wash. 99004-0218. ID PUBLICATION # 102240 Rates: Addresses in Spokane County, $24 per year; $36 per year outside Spokane County; senior citizens in Spokane County, $22 per year. For other rates, call 235- 6184. Subscription cancellations are non-refundable! HOW TO CONTACT US OBITUARIES, MEETINGS OF GOVERNMENT AGENCIES - Tuesday, 10 a.m. CHURCH, CLUB MEETINGS, ALL SOCIAL NEWS --~ Monday, noon DISP.LAY ADVERTISING -- Monday, 4 p.m. LEGAL NOTICES -- Monday, 5 p.m. CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING -- Tuesday, 11 a.m. Phone: 235-6184 Fax: 235-2887 emaih cfp @ places where nuts, bolts, screws and various tools are supposed to live. And for some reason, my friend Russ tossed out the idea that we ought to perform an exorcism on the possessed toilet adjacent to the guestroom. He and his wife Suzanne swore it would routinely flush itself without bonding with a over and over again, hand tool of sorqe kind. Mind you Russ, a Real- But our dqwntime, tor by day/night and own- which was sign! icant, was er of a fleet of rentals, had spent connecting, catch- just spent weeks updating ing up and chatting about some of his Portland, Ore. everything under the hot, properties, so perhaps, like hot sun. me, he could not fully de-0 compress and totally relax See Write to the POint page 5 US Women's Soccer Team - 2015 World i l; : ill; I John McCallum A1 Stover Editor Staff Reporter Main contact for editorial coverage. Coy- Covers all Medical Lake government, ers all Chaney government, communi~ communlly and school district news, as school district news and events, as well well as Airway Heights news and Cheney as Cheney High School sports. High School sports. jraac @ chaneylreepresawm al @ awm Paul Delaney Staff Reporter Covers all Medical Lake High School and Eastern Washington University sports and news. Contact for mi, cellaneous sports. pdelaney @ cheneyfree; m.ssa~om