Governor Inslee says that only his views matter when it comes to building large solar and wind farms and all other voices need to be silenced.
Governor Jay Inslee told an audience in Egypt that only his opinion matters on the placement of large wind and solar farms in Washington State, and that citizens should not have the right of due process if they oppose these large facilities, even if they destroy threatened species habitat and further reduce land suitable for farming. The governor expressed his negative views about local control while participating in a panel discussion at the United Nations’ latest climate conference currently being held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt (in which the governor’s travel expenses were partially paid for by the liberal activist group Climate Registry). The governor stated, “I do believe we need some change because the nimbyism that we will now be facing will be prolific.” (NIMBY is an acronym standing for “Not In My Back Yard,” used by those who don’t want to pay attention to people who oppose things they want to jam through.)
The governor could have hopped into his state-provided SUV or even State Patrol airplane to go talk with Central Washington citizens who are legitimately concerned about the negative impact of multiple wind and solar farms currently in development (mostly in the Yakima Valley and Chelan/Douglas counties regions). Instead, our climate-hypocritical governor added to his rather substantial carbon footprint by travelling to the other side of the planet to express his disdain for Washington citizen’s valid concerns. Republican Senator Judy Warnick (Moses Lake) expressed her position on the governor silencing Washington citizens by stating, “We need local control. If that’s nimbyism, so be it.”
Democrats and liberal organizations have often used local control measures and lawsuits to delay or stop projects they don’t favor. Yet for the climate projects favored by their campaign donors, Governor Inslee and Democrat legislators have reversed course and are now actively removing local regulatory control and legal due process. Last year, Democrat legislators expanded the power of the state’s Energy Facilities Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC), which is packed with members of the Inslee administration and his appointees. The legislature (HB 1812), on behalf of the governor, removed local commissions from determining whether or not to permit construction of these energy farms, and gave it to the bureaucrats who sit on the EFSEC. When Representative Mark Klicker (R – Walla Walla) passed legislation to study the impact of large energy farms on reshaping Eastern Washington’s agricultural landscape, the governor vetoed it because he was fearful of the results. (Capital Press, Energy Facilities Site Evaluation Council members, and Washington State Legislature Bill Summary)
Republican Representative Greg Gilday has pulled ahead – by 15 votes – over Democrat Clyde Shavers, whose campaign quickly disintegrated in the final week before the election as his family verified multiple reports that he had repeatedly lied to voters about his military service, work experience, family history, and residency. Shift broke the story eight days before the election that Shavers’ father wrote an emotional letter detailing the many lies of his son and his campaign. Initial vote counts, largely composed of ballots filled out before Shift’s damning article was posted, had Representative Gilday down by 1,500 votes. Yet the ballots mailed after the posting of Shift’s story, and counted after election day, have broken decisively for the Republican.
These latest numbers were delayed as the Island County Auditor’s Office did not release its scheduled Monday afternoon count until 7:45 AM Tuesday morning, after not counting any votes since last Thursday. There remains approximately 4,000 ballots (1,000 in Island, 3,800 in Skagit, and 200 in Snohomish) left to counted in the race. Most of these are expected to be counted this afternoon. It is very likely that this race will need to go through the automatic recount process, since it appears that the margin of victory will be below the one half of one percent (0.5%) threshold. Quick math shows (figuring approximately 75,000 total votes cast) that the victor will need to lead by more than approximately 375 votes to avoid an automatic recount. (Washington Secretary of State election totals and Shift article)
Students from Ingraham High School marched on Seattle City Hall Monday, demanding more counseling services and additional gun restrictions following the on-campus homicide of one of their classmates last week. The investigation into the premeditated murder of the 17-year-old student by a 14-year old student has found that the gun used in the crime had been reported as “lost” to the Snohomish County Sheriff’s office on October 28th. It was illegal for the 14-year-old to carry a weapon. While it is appropriate to sympathize with the strong and painful emotions many of these young people are experiencing after seeing one of their classmates gunned down in the hallway between classes, we are not sure of what further gun restrictions would have prevented this tragic event from taking place. Laws intended to prevent such tragedies were broken – the gun appears to have been stolen and ended up in the possession of a teen who legally cannot possess the weapon.
The City of Seattle already has the most restrictive gun policies in the state. Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell used the tragedy to hold a press conference calling for the state to allow cities to determine their own gun laws. Yet according to the Seattle Times, “Harrell couldn’t pinpoint a specific policy response to this incident, but suggested the state consider a number of approaches including training requirements, extended waiting periods and assault-rifle bans.” Unfortunately, none of those gun measures would have prevented the incredibly sad tragedy that took place at Ingraham. (Seattle Times)
Among the many signs of future economic difficulties which will impact the Puget Sound region come two staggering ones from the high-tech sector. Amazon announced that it would lay off approximately 10,000 workers as people are spending less money online. Meta (Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Giphy, etc.) announced that it will be laying off 11,000 employees, 725 of which work in the Seattle and Bellevue area. (Axios Seattle and Seattle Times)
A Redfin report reveals that Seattle households need to have twice the annual income level over the national average to own a home in the city. Nationally, the average income required to own a home is $107,281, while $205,312 in annual income is needed in Seattle. Liberal housing policies, high taxes, and environmental regulations are the major reasons why home prices are so much higher here than the rest of the country. Maybe Jay Inslee could cut through all that red tape and lower prices by reducing regulatory burdens, like if housing were a green energy project (see story above in the “State” section). (KOMO News)
Former Washington State University football coach Nick Rolovich filed a lawsuit in Whitman County Superior Court against Governor Jay Inslee and WSU Athletic Director Patrick Chun for unlawfully firing him from his position and for being “hostile” to him. Rolovich was removed from his head coaching position last October for failing to adhere to Governor Inslee’s COVID vaccine mandate. The lawsuit contends that AD Chun interfered with Rolovich’s attempt to obtain a religious exemption, for calling the coach a “con-man,” and for withholding his pay for three months in 2020. The lawsuit’s filing papers argue that Governor Inslee did not inform state employees of the potential risk of taking the experimental vaccine and for acting against immunization standards set by the U.S. Government. (KING5 News)
Shift’s Newsmaker Interview was with Michael Gallagher, president & CEO of the Washington Policy Center (WPC), one of the top state-based free-market think tanks in the country. Gallagher returned to the state to assume the role after spending 25 years working in Washington D.C., first as an aide to Congressman Rick White, later as an Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Department of Commerce, and as the president and CEO of the Entertainment Software Association. Gallagher outlined many of the exciting programs underway at WPC, including its “Solutions On the Table” series which helps average citizens understand the top issues before the Washington State Legislature. Gallagher also described the great success WPC has had in placing information about the cost of Governor Jay Inslee’s extreme energy policies at the locations where citizens will most feel the impact – at the gas pump. WPC has already placed more than 300 “pump-toppers” at Washington State gas stations to inform drivers that Governor Inslee’s extreme policies will increase the cost of gas an additional 46 cents a gallon, beginning in the new year. (Click to read full Newsmaker Interview)
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