Statement from Rep. Drew Stokesbary on passage of House Democrats’ 2021-23 operating budget

Rep. Drew Stokesbary, R-Auburn, ranking Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement Saturday following passage of the House Democrats’ 2021-23 operating budget:

“I am astounded House Democrats continue to advance a new tax on capital gains income as part of their operating budget, despite robust state tax collections and billions in federal stimulus funding. And I am profoundly disappointed House Democrats rejected the amendment I sponsored that would have funded their entire budget proposal without relying on a tax that will eliminate one of our state’s key competitive advantages and ultimately drive investment, innovation, and opportunity to other states. 

“State tax collections have grown by 10 percent over the past year, and the state will collect an additional $4.3 billion in 2021-23. But families across our state still face enormous financial stress, unemployment remains high, and the state has yet to recover roughly 200,000 of its pandemic-related job losses. At a time when thousands of workers are desperate for jobs, it is frustrating House Democrats want to tax the innovators and entrepreneurs whose investments create those opportunities.   

“All in all, this is a disappointing budget, not because of what it funds, but because of how it chooses to fund it. House Republicans will continue to support tax policy that helps working families, such as the Working Families Tax Exemption I cosponsored this year, but we will not support a budget that includes anti-job, anti-growth economic policy. Nor will we support a budget that relies on a volatile, unpopular, and unconstitutional tax that jeopardizes funding for items such as the Working Families Tax Exemption. The people of our state deserve better.”


Washington State House Republican Communications