Greetings Friends and Neighbors,
The 2018 legislative session will present challenges and opportunities as control of the state Senate has changed. After five years, our Republican-led coalition will be in the minority, but we have a record of bipartisan accomplishments of which to be proud. When our coalition began governing we prioritized education, jobs and responsible budgeting. While serving as the chair of the Senate’s Higher Education Committee, I spearheaded efforts to cut college tuition for working families, and supported historic investments in our K-12 system, while fending off billions in new taxes, and more. The former Majority Leader recently authored an op-ed in the Seattle Times discussing those accomplishments and our commitment to future bipartisan successes. I encourage you to read the piece. Please click here.
I will continue to serve as the Minority Whip, a critical leadership role within the Caucus, and will serve on the Senate’s budget committee, Ways and Means, the Health and Long Term Care Committee, and the Rules Committee.
With one-party control I am worried about an overly partisan, Seattle-centric agenda. Remember, the Senate Republicans represent a far more diverse economic, geographic and environmental population, and our needs are different. I remain committed to working with my colleagues across the aisle to achieve real success for citizens of our state like we’ve seen under divided government.
In my last e-news update, I mentioned the McCleary court case regarding education funding. There was a hearing in October to see if the recent work by Legislature to amply fund schools was sufficient. The Court recently issued its ruling indicating that we have met our obligation to fund basic, but they are displeased with the timeline. The Majority party will have to determine how to handle the Court’s findings, but my concern based on past performance is that they will seek to raid our state’s reserves or attempt to impose new taxes.
You can read more about the developments in a recent article from the Everett Herald. Please click here.
Working with me in Olympia
It is hard to believe that the 2018 legislative session is fast approaching. That means that young adults from my district can come to Olympia for a week long experience unlike any other. We have an excellent program that gives students, like the ones pictured, between the ages of 14 and 17 an opportunity to work in the legislature. Like a class, students learn about state government and the legislative process.
Every year I have the opportunity to sponsor a limited number of students to participate in the page program, so apply today!
For information on how your student can become a page call my office at (360) 786-7618. It is a rewarding experience and I encourage you to apply.
Visit here for more information on the program and you can watch this informational video.
Staying in touch
I will keep you apprised of developments from Olympia as they happen. Until then, please feel free to reach out to my office with any questions or concerns you may have about your state government, or if you’d like to schedule a meeting or for me to attend a community event. I hope you and your family have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving Holiday.
Your State Senator
Podcast: Play in new window | Download