Gov. Chris Gregoire on budget challenges, education and her eight years in office

By | December 13, 2012 | Comments

Gov. Chris Gregoire came into office eight years ago in the closest governor’s race in state history, and presided over Washington during some of the state’s worst budget years.

In a wide-ranging interview with “Inside Olympia” host Austin Jenkins, Gregoire talks about her hits and misses during her tenure — as well as the one thing she wants to do the most when she leaves office in mid-January (hint: it’s something most of us do every day).

The show airs Dec. 13 at 7 & 10 p.m., and we’ll post it here once it’s online.

Although she remained tight-lipped about what to expect in her budget release next Tuesday, Gregoire said she met with Gov.-elect Jay Inslee this week to “have a very thorough conversation” about the options on the table.

Gregoire’s proposed budget is expected to deal with a $1 billion shortfall, as well as with the state Supreme Court’s mandate to fully fund eduction. It’ll serve as a blueprint for the Inslee administration.

Inslee pledged during his campaign to not raise taxes, and Gregoire said she’s “trying to honor and respect what he said.”

However, Inslee did leave the door open for at least one new revenue source.

“He never, ever took revenue for transportation off the table,” said Gregoire, who is expected to propose a major transportation package next week along with the general budget.

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Categories: Governors Office