AWB Statement on the 2014 Election
OLYMPIA — Kris Johnson, president of the Association of Washington Business, issued the following statement on the outcome of the 2014 election:
"Although some races are still very close, voters clearly want lawmakers from both parties who are capable of working with their colleagues across the aisle and leading Washington in a fiscally responsible manner. At a time when it seemed that bipartisanship was a relic, at least at the federal level, the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus has demonstrated that it's possible for legislators in Olympia to find common ground and adopt balanced, sustainable budgets that emphasize education funding. We are mindful that the challenges ahead are large, but we are hopeful the current trend will continue.
"It's encouraging to see that voters took the time to study Initiative 1351 and didn't support it at the level that many observers had predicted. Although the appeal of lower class sizes might appear obvious at first glance, I-1351 is an expensive, unfunded mandate that carries little assurance it will do anything to improve education. Employers want a strong education system, but we need to be smart about how we invest in education. I-1351 is a poor investment.
"Our state faces many big challenges, including how to fund education and transportation infrastructure, how to positively impact the statewide economy and how to bring employers much-needed certainty and predictability with regard to regulation. We need lawmakers who understand the economy is still fragile and that although some parts of the state are rebounding from the recession, other parts — particularly the rural corners — are still struggling. We look forward to working with lawmakers as they address all of these issues in a bipartisan manner."
About the Association of Washington Business
Formed in 1904, the Association of Washington Business is Washington's oldest and largest statewide business association, and includes more than 8,100 members representing 700,000 employees. AWB serves as both the state’s chamber of commerce and the manufacturing and technology association. While its membership includes major employers like Boeing, Microsoft and Weyerhaeuser, 90 percent of AWB members employ fewer than 100 people. More than half of AWB's members employ fewer than 10. For more about AWB, visit www.awb.org.