Cut teacher salaries, release prisoners: Lawmakers talk budgets

Oct 10, 2011

OLYMPIA, Wash. — State lawmakers have started assessing potential ideas on how to fix the state's budget situation.

A Senate committee heard proposals Monday that would further reduce teacher salaries, release prisoners early and eliminate virtually all substance abuse services.

Senate Republican Leader Mike Hewitt called the cuts eye-opening and said the reductions in prisons would be a threat to safety.

None of the proposals have been officially endorsed by lawmakers and their staff. Lawmakers are simply starting the process of reviewing options to find about $2 billion in cuts before a special session that starts at the end of November.

Gov. Chris Gregoire's office plans to develop a new budget proposal by next month.