Lawmakers start passing tax bills before budget is public

Lawmakers start passing tax bills before budget is public

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) – Senate Democrats have passed a key tax bill that appears to be part of a budget deal that has not yet been made public.

Budget writers in the Democratic-led House and Senate announced Thursday afternoon that they had reached a tentative agreement on a new two-year state budget, but that it wouldn’t be made public until details were finalized, likely Saturday. But late Thursday night, the Senate brought up a tax that was part of their original plan, a change to the real estate excise tax that they now say will bring in about $600 million dollars over the next four years. They passed it on a 26-22 vote after 11 p.m.

The 105-day-legislative session is scheduled to end Sunday.