Dear Friends and Neighbors,
It is an honor to serve as your newest 18th District state representative. I look forward to bringing your voice and perspective to the forefront here in Olympia.
In speaking with thousands of you across our district, I learned we share many of the same priorities. As your representative, I will be fighting to keep taxes low, cut government waste, and eliminate unnecessary regulations on small businesses. I will also be working to find an I-5 bridge solution, strengthen our state's K-12 education system, protect your 2nd amendment rights, and create jobs in Southwest Washington.
To keep you updated on the latest here in Olympia, I'll be sending out email updates every two weeks during session. Please feel free to share them with your family and friends, or have them visit my legislative website to sign up for future updates. For those of you who don't want to receive these emails, you can unsubscribe here.
We just wrapped up the second week of the 2019 legislative session. It's been fascinating to be part of the process after observing it from afar for so long. There is a steady buzz to this place that begins at 7 a.m. every morning and doesn't let up until well into the evening. Members, staff and stakeholders are all hard at work, burning the midnight oil to check everything off their to-do lists before waking up and doing it all over again. Across the state, people continue to make the drive to Olympia to provide committee testimony on the issues most important to them.
Speaking of House committees, I was appointed to serve on three this session. Because of my 35 years of experience in the private sector, House Republican leadership appointed me assistant ranking member of the House Consumer Protection and Business Committee. The committee considers an array of consumer protection issues, as well as issues related to the safety and soundness of state banks and credit unions, the regulation of consumer credit and lending, and the regulation of securities and investments.
I also serve on the House Appropriations Committee, which considers the operating budget. I recently wrote an op-ed for The Reflector about the governor's budget proposal, which would raise taxes on Washingtonians by $10 billion over the next four years. You can read it below or by clicking here. It is my hope that when majority party budget writers sit down to craft the operating budget, they will place a higher priority on fiscal discipline than the governor did.
The other committee I'm serving on this session is the House Labor and Workplace Standards Committee, which reviews all legislation related to industrial insurance, unemployment compensation, collective bargaining, family leave, safety and health standards, occupational health and employment standards.
Measles outbreak in Clark County
There have now been 30 confirmed cases of measles across Clark County, which is very concerning. With the outbreak continuing to grow, Gov. Inslee issued a proclamation this morning declaring a State of Emergency. The proclamation directs the Washington State Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan to be implemented, which allows state agencies and departments to utilize state resources to assist in prevention and response efforts.
Earlier this evening, I joined Sens. Rivers and Wilson, as well as Reps. Harris and Vick in issuing a statement on the outbreak. You can read that here.
For more information about the outbreak, as well as resources on how you can prevent its spread, click here to visit the Washington State Department of Health's website.
House Page Program
Here in the House, students ages 14 to 16 have an excellent opportunity to get involved in their state government by serving as a page for a week. Students in the House Page Program attend page school every day, deliver messages and documents to legislators and staff, and fulfill other tasks critical to the efficient operation of the Legislature.
To apply, students must have a legislative sponsor and obtain written permission from their parents and school. If you know of someone who you think would be a good candidate to serve as a page for a week, please reach out to me at email@example.com. To learn more about the House Page Program, click here.
While the Legislature is only in session for 105 days, I am here to serve you year-round. Please feel free to reach out to me any time with your comments, questions or concerns about state government or particular bills.
I also encourage you to contact my legislative assistant, Virginia Hall, to set up a time to meet with me in Olympia. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, and our office phone number is (360) 786-7812.
It is an honor to serve you. Thank you for the privilege.