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House approves budget that prioritizes schools, mental health

Eastern State Hospital.

OLYMPIA, Washington — The Washington House approved the bipartisan 2017-19 biennium supplemental capital budget on Tuesday. The plan includes more than $207 million in bond revenue for projects statewide, including K-12 school construction and mental health facilities.

Along with $21 million for local and community projects statewide, the budget adds $42.8 million to the School Construction Assistance Program.

Institutional-based mental health facilities construction and remodeling will also get a boost with $17.8 million in improvements for state hospitals and facilities including $3.5 million for 25 new forensic beds at Eastern State Hospital in Spokane County, $9 million for the conversion of 60 civil beds into forensic beds at Western State Hospital in Lakewood, and $2.9 million for projects to address the system improvement agreement with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

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