As Washington lawmakers prepare for a new legislative session to craft and pass a supplemental budget, they’ll have more money to work with thanks to a steady increase of state revenues over the past year.
Updated numbers by the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council released Friday show that projected revenue collections for the 2021-2023 budget cycle are $898 million above what had been originally forecasted in September. And projections for the next two-year budget cycle that ends in mid-2025 increased by more than $965 million.
Revenues for the current budget cycle that ends mid-2023 are now projected to be $60.2 billion. And projected revenues for the next two-year budget cycle that starts July 1, 2023 are projected to be about $64 billion.
Steve Lerch, the chief economist and executive director of the council, said that compared to the first forecast this year in March, overall revenues increased $3.6 billion for the current biennium and $4.1 billion for the next.
Republican legislative members of the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council said in response to the strong growth, tax cuts should be part of any final plan. Democratic budget writers said nothing is off the table but expressed caution.