Republicans propose stand-alone education budget



OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington state House Republicans are releasing a proposed education budget they say would preserve the 180-day school year while cutting programs to combat bullying and enforce civil rights.

At a Thursday news conference, a group of GOP leaders said their spending plan shows they are serious about paying for K-12 education ahead of all other funding obligations.

The Washington Supreme Court ruled in January that the state isn’t meeting its constitutional obligation to amply pay for basic public education.

As the minority party in both houses of the Legislature, the Republicans do not drive the agenda in Olympia.

Rep. Ross Hunter, D-Medina, who chairs the powerful Ways and Means committee, said that working on an education budget separately from the full budget would be impractical.