Governor proposes carbon tax in State of the State Address, but no Hirst fix


Legislator: Rep. Dan Kristiansen
Run Time: 74 seconds
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SUGGESTED LEAD: During his State of the State Address Tuesday, Governor Jay Inslee outlined a lengthy list of wants in his agenda for the 60-day legislative session in Olympia. But a fix for the controversial Hirst water decision was not among them. John Sattgast reports from the state Capitol.

SATTGAST: Now that Democrats have slim majorities in the House and Senate, Governor Jay Inslee is hoping to seize the opportunity to pass legislation that has previously been blocked the past five years when Republicans controlled the Senate. Gun control, the Washington Voter Rights Act and an aggressive climate change agenda. Above all, the governor told lawmakers Tuesday, he wants a carbon tax.

INSLEE: “By passing a carbon tax, we would simply join our West Coast neighbors and the rest of the world as the global economy moves away from fossil fuels and toward a decarbonized clean energy future.”

SATTGAST: But House Republican Leader Dan Kristiansen believes the governor's plan is not so much about cleaning the environment, as it is to grow government at the expense of the middle class.

KRISTIANSEN: “When you run the numbers on it, you're looking at a 19 to 20-cent per gallon gas tax. You're looking at your heating and utility bills going up. Your electricity bills going up. You're looking at food prices going up, manufacturing prices going up, delivery prices going up. While I appreciate the effort and I've talked about this a little bit before, this is extremely tax heavy and policy short.”

SATTGAST: The governor also called on passage of a capital construction budget, but said nothing about fixing the controversial Hirst water decision – a fact pointed out by Republicans who believe that should be on the top of the 2018 agenda.

John Sattgast, Olympia

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