Washingtonians FINALLY have access to remove testimony for senate hearings
Happening in Olympia
The bill that would lead to the removal of missionary Marcus Whitman’s statue from the state capitol and Statuary Hall in the U.S. Capitol met resistance with Senators at the first hearing. Sen. Dean Takko (D-Longview) acknowledged some issues related to Whitman’s actions when viewed through a 21stcentury lens but cautioned, “In 50 years do we take another lens and look at whoever we pick today? You know, he was an important part of history. To kind of just wipe it off like it never happened — or he never happened — I kind of have a problem with that.” (NW News Network)
The Washington Policy Center took a look at what the newest carbon fee (tax) proposal would fund and why even calling it a “carbon fee” is dishonest. The bill says it would raise $7.879 billion from drivers over the next ten years via a 13 cent per gallon gas tax. Most of the funds raised wouldn’t be spent on projects that drivers would benefit from with 44% going to fund fish passage barrier removal. This important court-ordered project seems to be being used as leverage to pass this bill which could and should be paid out of the $6 billion of unexpected new revenue coming in. (Washington Policy Center)
Voters could get a say in whether the state makes Daylight Saving Time permanent. After 60% of California voters approved Proposition 7 to do this in California, there are bipartisan bills in both Oregon and Washington to make this change up the west coast. Washington’s bill, sponsored by Rep. Marcus Riccelli (D-Spokane), includes a referendum clause which means if passed, it wouldn’t become law without voter approval. The Oregon bill has a similar clause. (NW News Network)
Washington residents will now have the option to testify remotely for senate hearings instead of trekking over to Olympia. The Washington State Senate approved a bi-partisan bill sponsored by Sens. Andy Billig (D-Spokane) and Mike Padden (R-Spokane Valley) to expand and make permanent it’s years-long pilot project. This bill will especially benefit Eastern Washington residents who have great distance and weather-related impediments that makes it difficult to access state government. (KPQ)
The now Reign FC announced its intention to move its home games to Tacoma for the 2019 season. “Can you believe that right here in Tacoma, we’re getting a professional women’s soccer team!” Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards said. The team is hoping a permanent move to Tacoma will help boost average attendance. (The News Tribune)
The city of Olympia removed two unsanctioned homeless camps earlier this week following months of criticism from businesses. A city spokeswoman said campers were given notice beforehand and were offered spots at the city’s sanctioned camp. “It’s not sustainable the way it is,” said Colin DeForrest, the city’s homeless response coordinator, of the State Avenue camp. “I think everybody knows that.” (The Olympian)
State Representative Bill Jenkin (R-Prosser), suffered a heart attack last Friday and is home recovering from quadruple bypass surgery. “I know how important it is as your state representative to be present in Olympia for committee hearings, debates and votes on the bills and issues that matter most to our district, and the state of Washington. I look forward to getting back to work soon,” Jenkin said. (Tri-City Herald)
Yakima County Sheriff Bob Udell announced his office would not enforce the new Washington gun control initiative. “I just do not believe that it falls within the Constitution — not the state or federal constitutions,” Udell said Wednesday. “I don’t like it.” Udell’s decision comes after a handful of other sheriffs had made similar announcements. (Yakima County)
Legalize Richland, a community group associated with Benton County Libertarians, intends to file a to lift the city’s ban on cannabis businesses. Councilwoman Sandra Kent said residents who want to “engage” with cannabis can purchase it legally in Prosser and Finley. Adding that it simply does not belong in Richland. “Being drug-free is part of Richland’s DNA,” she said. (Tri-City Herald)
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