Dear Friends and Neighbors,
The 2020 legislative session is underway. While there are many issues before us in the short, 60-day session, I want to share some of the priorities of the House Republican Caucus.
It's Your Home. Expect More.
The focus of House Republicans this session is very simple. My colleagues and I believe Washington state is your home and you should expect more. We want you to feel safe in your home and community. You should not have to endure new or increased taxes and more regulatory and financial burdens. Below are just a few of our priorities and bills we are working on this session.
- Support our law enforcement professionals. | House Bill 2537, House Bill 2538, House Bill 2539, House Bill 2560;
- Ensure safe neighborhoods through proactive policing. | House Bill 1501;
- Provide local governments more options to address homelessness. | House Bill 2282, House Bill 2658, House Bill 2639; and
- Protect communities from wildfires. | House Bill 1188.
Making life more affordable
- Implement $30 car tabs. | House Bill 2227, House Bill 2659;
- Reduce the state property tax. | House Bill 2222;
- Reaffirm the prohibition of the imposition of a local income tax. | House Bill 2479;
- Streamline licensing and regulations to lower the cost of childcare. | House Bill 1378;
- Lower the costs of attending college. | House Bill 1701, House Bill 1702;
- Oppose any new low-carbon fuel mandate or costly fuel program.
- Oppose a new vehicle-miles-traveled tax or road user charge.
Making government more accountable
- Eliminate title-only, “ghost bills” and increase legislative transparency. | House Bill 2190;
- Respect the will of the voters (I-976) and address transportation revenue shortfalls with existing revenue. | House Bill 2323; and
- Implement metrics and performance audits for state spending. | House Bill 2150.
Second Amendment rights under fire
Many of you have expressed concern about the continuing erosion of our Second Amendment rights. I understand your concerns as our rights to defend ourselves and our loved ones is threatened. There were many gun bills up for public hearings in the second week of the legislative session. So you know what we are up against, I have included the agendas for the House Civil Rights and Judiciary Committee from Week Two. It is not too late to share your concerns, comments or questions on these bills. I encourage you to call or email the chair and members of the committee. You can find their contact information here.
House Bill 2524 would add pears to the definition of “agriculture products” under the state Agricultural Marketing and Fair Practices Act. This would allow pear prices to be negotiated between growers and processors. This is a similar practice for other ag products. This process would give farmers the ability to get full value for their crops. The bill had a public hearing and was passed by the House Committee on Rural Development, Agriculture and Natural Resources. It is now in the House Appropriations Committee.
House Bill 1878, a bill I introduced last year, would increase Medicaid payments for low volume, small rural hospitals. A new bill had to be filed this year, HB 2729, to change the dates in the legislation since the bill did not pass last session. It has been introduced by my seatmate Rep. Jeremie Dufault, and I am a cosponsor. The bill has had a public hearing in the House Appropriations Committee.
This is an important issue as our health care providers and patients in rural areas face many different obstacles than those in urban areas. The recent closure of Astria Health in Yakima will add a lot of stress to the health care situation in our region.
Stay connected to the legislative session
Follow the Legislature during the session. Below are a few helpful links that can keep you informed and updated on what is happening in Olympia.
- The Washington State Ledger: It is a legislative news aggregator administered by state House Republicans. It is a great source for information related to state government, public policy and the legislative process. Check it out!
- The Current: An online legislative publication from the Washington House Republicans.
- My legislative website: You will find my contact information, bio, news releases, email updates, videos, opinion pieces, bills, and other information.
- TVW: The state's own version of C-SPAN, TVW broadcasts floor and committee action live online.
Thank you for taking the time to read my email update. And thank you for allowing me to serve you in the state Legislature. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.