I hope you had a wonderful holiday season. I’ve been busy preparing for the 2024 legislative session which begins in just under a week. In preparation, I finished the year strong, meeting with constituents in our district and attending a variety of conferences and workshops to help me better represent you in Olympia.
During the last week of November, the Senate met at the state Capitol to hold committee hearings where we can get a sense of what the Legislature will be working on during this short, 60-day session.
I continue to serve as the Ranking member on the Senate’s housing-related committee, on the State Government and Elections Committee and the Transportation Committee.
Staying engaged in your state government is critical and I’m here to be a resource. At the end of this newsletter, you’ll find additional links to help you participate in the legislative process.
It’s an honor to serve as your state Senator.
Trust the science
Opponents of the state’s carbon pricing scheme were clear that this policy would drive up fuel costs at the pump at a time when Washingtonians could least afford it. The governor and legislative Democrats argued that any increases would be nominal, however simple math indicated a significant increase of close to 50 cents per gallon for this crony-capitalist shell game, and that’s exactly what happened.
Supporters of this carbon-pricing scam tried gaslight the public and shift blame onto the supposed greed of oil companies. They completely ignored the fact that our neighboring states have had much lower gas prices.
We learned from a whistleblower that the public may have been purposefully misled about the ‘cap-and-tax’ program. A long-time and relatively senior state employee who was tasked with calculating the costs says he was pressured to lie about the impact on gas prices, which showed a 45 to 50 cents per gallon increase. He refused to lie and appears was retaliated against and forced from his job.
Watch the KING 5 story by clicking here.
Unfortunately, I’m not surprised by this news. During Governor Inslee’s tenure, state agencies have been plagued by serious mismanagement. This isn’t the first time and likely not the last where the uniparty state will try to hide the truth from the public.
In my last newsletter, I had asked for your feedback on issues facing the Legislature. Thank you very much for taking the time to provide those insights. As I suspected, there’s a big disconnect between what’s happening in Olympia and what our district sees as priorities. I will take these results to heart when working on your behalf when the Legislature convenes in early January. Click on the image or on this link to see the full report from the survey.
As part of my interim travels I participated in a practice version of the Convention of States. If you’re unfamiliar, this is concept developed in our nation’s founding whereby the state’s can amend the U.S. Constitution, following a similar process for Congress. You can read more about this movement by clicking here.
It was an interesting learning experience with delegates from around the country. There are already a number of states that have passed legislation to convene an Article V Convention.
The organization began in 2013 and in a short amount of time has done some impressive work aimed at using our Constitutional process to effect change and place needed limits on the federal government. I believe that something like this is needed now more than ever. To date, 19 states have approved the Convention of States Resolution.
Engaging with your Legislature
One lasting result from the COVID pandemic has been increased access through technology to your state government. It can be a big burden for citizens to come to Olympia to participate in committee hearings or meet with their representatives. Now, the public can access tons of information about what’s happening in the state Legislature and give their feedback online. Below are valuable tools to have your voice heard and get informed.
Overview of how to testify remotely:
General information on how to sign in to testify remotely before a Senate committee:
Want to follow bills on a topic of concern?
You can also search for legislation by bill number or by keywords and text of a proposal. Click here for more information.