Dear Friends and Neighbors,
It is hard to believe we have already seen the month of January come and go. We are just completing week three of the 105-day 2019 legislative session. We are already off to the races with good policy moving forward and bad policy being introduced.
Before I dive into the good, the bad and the ugly of session at this point, I hope you will take a view moments to watch my latest legislative video update talking about a very important bill I have introduced. I want to bring hope to the domestic violence arena. I believe Tina's bill is that hope.
The good, the bad, and the ugly
Every session, good bills are introduced that will make a positive difference to the citizens of Washington state. On the flip side, there will always be bad or even ugly bills that try to make their way through the legislative process. This session is will be no different.
The good: House Bill 1064
Let's start with something good. One of the contentious issues facing our state, and the nation, is the perceived disconnect between law enforcement officers and the communities they serve. You, the voters of Washington state, passed an initiative in November, known as I-940, believing this was the right solution to this divide. Unfortunately, this initiative has created unintended consequences, placing officers' abilities to protect you, your family and communities at great risk.
With this sensitive issue, stakeholders and community members behind I-940 came together alongside law enforcement to find a solution that worked for everyone. Through tough but open conversations, long meetings, and finding our common ground, a unified consensus was reached.
This is an even bigger win than it sounds. In the 10 years I have been a member of the Legislature, I have never witnessed two sides with vehemently opposite viewpoints come together. Everyone kept their promises to finding a solution for the unintended consequences of I-940, even after it was passed by the voters and became state law. We worked collaboratively, side-by-side, to reach a unified consensus for what is best for the citizens of Washington state.
House Bill 1064 is what it looks like to take a sensitive issue and work hard toward a common goal. This effort brings back my faith in government, and shows that by working together we can achieve great things. Monday will be a great day at the Legislature! I look forward to standing arm-in-arm with my fellow brothers and sisters in law enforcement, stakeholders, community members, and my colleagues as Gov. Inslee signs House Bill 1064 into law.
The bad and ugly: Senate Bill 5326
And now, the bad and ugly. Recently, Senate Bill 5326 came into the woodworks. This bill would have essentially “banned the booth,” affecting thousands of hairdressers, entrepreneurs, and small businesses across the state. This was the majority party's way of pulling the rug out from under an entire industry, most of whom are women, thinking they know how to run your business better than you do.
Although this was a terrible policy, it united an entire industry to create a grassroots movement unlike any other. Hundreds of you came forward to testify against this ugly policy. Petitions were signed to oppose this ridiculous attack on your livelihood. You provided heartfelt testimony, while trying to hold back tears, as you explained how this bill would negatively affect your families, your children, and the very foundation of business you have successfully created.
I am proud of each and every person who came forward to let your voices be heard! Thank YOU for participating in your democracy. In case you have not heard the news, your efforts and your voices were heard loud and clear. This horrible policy is dead in its tracks! You did it!
It is my job, alongside my esteemed colleagues, to continue to fight against bad policies such as this. We still have a long way to go this session. This will not be the only issue that will demand your voices to be heard. I encourage you to continue to take a stance on any policies, good or bad, that influence you, your family, and/or your business. Stay involved in the legislative process. If you cannot come to the Capitol, please contact my office. I am YOUR voice in Olympia and will always fight for what is best for you, our district, and this great state of Washington.
Stay in touch with me!
Throughout the legislative session, I hope you will take the time to call, email or visit me in Olympia. I welcome your thoughts and concerns on issues before the Legislature. I look forward to working with you and for YOU!
I know all of us don't always agree on everything all the time, but please know, I still value hearing from you! I enjoy our respectful dialogues, even when we don't agree on the issue.
Thank you again for the opportunity and the honor to serve you, your family, and our communities as your State Representative.
May God richly bless you all! Have a great Washington day!