The deadline for avoiding a government shutdown on July 1 is fast approaching, yet the state Legislature still cannot agree on a budget.
The Emergency Food Network and other hunger-relief programs received notices this week telling us that if there is no budget, we will not get the funds from the state that we rely on to make sure no one in Pierce County goes hungry.
We serve 66 hunger-relief programs in Pierce County. Without funding from the state many of the programs we serve could face closed doors due to lack of rent, unable to buy supplement food and/or the shut off of utilities.
It is time for the Legislature to agree on a budget, one that shares our priorities for all Washingtonians. The House budget includes funding requests for food banks and other key anti-hunger programs while meeting basic education funding obligations, thanks to the inclusion of a modest capital gains tax.
Not passing a budget is not an option, and neither is passing one that doesn't support our neighbors who are still struggling.
(McGovern-Pilant is executive director of the Emergency Food Network.)