Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday signed the supplemental operating budget passed by lawmakers last month, which pays for wildfire and mental health costs. It also commits the Legislature to fully fund basic education next year.
“This sets the state up for success in 2017,” he said. “We have what we need, which is a budget with financial rigor.”
Inslee vetoed a section of the budget that would have cut $10 million in funding to the State Auditor’s Office. The governor said he didn’t know if lawmakers made the budget cut in response to the criminal case against State Auditor Troy Kelley, who is on trial for charges of tax evasion, stealing money and lying under oath.
The veto restores funding that allows the auditor’s office to conduct performance audits. “These things have value,” Inslee said. “They help government perform its job better.”
As part of the agreement with the auditor’s office, $5 million dollars from the performance audit account will move back to the general fund.