Capital budget: Nearly $5 billion for schools, universities, cleanups and housing


The Legislature passed a $4.9 billion 2019-2021 capital budget shortly before adjournment of the Legislature. The total includes $3.2 billion from proceeds of state general-obligation bonds. This is a significant increase over the previous biennial capital budget, which totaled $4.4 billion.

About $585 million is funded via an increase in hazardous-materials tax, known as MTCA or the Model Toxics Control Act, paid primarily by refineries.

See this summary and list of projects funded by the capital budget.

Some highlights

Higher education   Nearly $1 billion for higher-education facilities, including $76 million for the STEM Building at UW Bothell to be shared jointly with Cascadia College, and $36 million to complete Phase II of the Global Animal Health Building at WSU.

Public schools   $1 billion is provided for K-12 School Construction Assistance grants, with additional money for specific distressed schools (Leschi Elementary, Madison Middle and North Beach Elementary).

Affordable housing   $175 is provided for affordable-housing projects, including $35 million for housing projects that provide supportive housing and case-management services for persons with chronic mental illness, and $45 million for 15 specific housing projects.

Behavioral health   $120 million to expand community-based behavioral-health services

Mental health   $154 million is provided for a variety of projects, including $33 million for predesign, planning and design of a new 150-bed Behavioral Health Teaching Facility at UW, and $58 million for renovations at Eastern and Western State Hospitals.

Natural resources and toxics  The MTCA tax increase will fund, among other things, water-pollution control facilities, cleanup of toxic sites, projects to reduce flooding, and projects to improve instream flows for fish.
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For more information, contact AGC Chief Lobbyist Jerry VanderWood, 360.352.5000.