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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Students

In my e-mail update to you last week (click here to read it), I discussed the possibility of transportation tax increases becoming reality now that the state Supreme Court has ruled against the two-thirds vote requirement for the Legislature to raise taxes. I also noted that “before we ask voters for any new tax money, we need to make sure reforms are put into place in the state's transportation system.”

On Thursday, House Republicans issued a package of six economic and transportation reforms that we believe must be implemented before any taxes are raised for transportation. I encourage you to take a few minutes to read through this e-mail update and learn about our reform proposals.

I welcome your comments. You'll find my contact information at the bottom of this e-mail update. Please do not hit “reply” to this report, as it will not reach me.

Thank you for the honor of allowing me to serve you!

FIX IT BEFORE YOU FUND IT!

We have bridges with leaky pontoons, a faulty ferry, and money wasted because the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) built a freeway ramp in the wrong place and RoadConstructionhad to tear it out. Yet, House Democrats want a 10-cent-a-gallon increase in the state gas tax (which would make Washington the state with the highest gas tax in the nation), reinstatement of the motor vehicle excise tax (something voters eliminated with Initiative 695 in 1999) at .7 percent of vehicle value (equates to $140 per vehicle valued at $20,000), additional weight fees and more.

There is plenty of room for reforms. My House Republican colleagues and I say, “Fix it before you fund it!” That means implementing needed reforms within our state transportation system.

Last Thursday, we released a plan of economic and transportation reforms that would: create jobs, make gas tax dollars go further, ensure accountability and protect taxpayers. Here's a look at our plan:

Creating jobs

  • House Bill 1236 would require state agencies to make a permit decision in 90 days or the permit is granted.
  • House Bill 1619 would suspend Growth Management Act requirements in counties with persistent unemployment, where regulations often stand in the way of economic development.

Making gas tax dollars go further

  • House Bill 1985 would exempt future state transportation projects from state and local sales and use tax.

Ensuring accountability

  • House Bill 1986 would require WSDOT to report to the Legislature on engineering errors and mistakes that exceed $500,000.

Protecting taxpayers

  • House Bill 1984 would limit WSDOT's tort liability based on the amount of the department's actual fault, instead of allowing plaintiffs to recover the entire judgment from the deeper pockets of the state.
  • House Bill 1989 would limit bond terms for transportation projects to 15 years.

In the coming weeks, I will provide more details on each of these proposed reforms. You can read more about our reform plan here.

 

This week in Olympia!

I encourage you to become involved in your state Legislature. Below is the schedule for public hearings in the House committees this week. If you'd like to learn more about how to testify in committee, go here. Click on the links below to get information about each bill. For your convenience, I have highlighted in yellow those bills and issues that are most significant to the 39th District.

TUESDAY, MARCH 12

Government Operations and Elections Committee – House Hearing Room E – 8 a.m.Gavel

  • Internet Voting – Work session

Higher Education Committee – House Hearing Room A – 8 a.m.

  • Increasing Higher Education Facilities Authority Membership – Public Hearing on Senate Bill 5787
  • Regarding Access to Higher Education for Disabled Students – Public Hearing on Senate Bill 5180
  • Fundraising for the Health Professional Loan Repayment and Scholarship Program – Public Hearing on Senate Bill 5615

Public Safety Committee – House Hearing Room D – 8:30 a.m.

  • Sex Trafficking and Exploited Children – Public Hearing on Senate Bills 5308, 5488 and 5669

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13

Judiciary Committee – House Hearing Room A – 8 a.m.

  • Criminal Incompetency and Civil Commitment – Public Hearing on Senate Bill 5176

THURSDAY, MARCH 14

Education Committee – House Hearing Room A – 8 a.m.

Government Accountability and Oversight Committee – House Hearing Room E – 9 a.m.

Higher Education Committee – House Hearing Room A – 10 a.m.

  • Student Achievement Initiative – Work Session

FRIDAY, MARCH 15

Finance Committee – House Hearing Room A – 8 a.m.

  • Telecommunications Taxation Overview – Work Session
  • Communications Services Reform – Public Hearing on House Bill 1971

Early Learning and Human Services Committee – House Hearing Room C – 1:30 p.m.

  • Childhood Obesity – Work Session
  • Prevention of Childhood Obesity in Early Learning Programs – Public Hearing on House Bill 1784

Events at the State Capitol

We have many groups that visit the state Capitol during the legislative session and participate in events. Here's a look at public events planned this week.

TUESDAY, MARCH 12
AST Legislative Day / Mock Surgery
Events
10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Sponsored by: Association of Surgical Technologist
Legislative Building – Columbia Room
Estimated attendance: 30

AmeriCorps Day
10 – 2 p.m.
Sponsored by: Washington Commission for National and Community Service
Legislative Building – 3rd Floor Mezzanine
Estimated attendance: 25

Special AmeriCorps Presentation
12 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Sponsored by: AmeriCorps
Sylvester Park, Olympia
Estimated attendance: 25

WEDC Strategic Plan – Driving Washington's Prosperity
12 p.m. – 12:45 p.m.
Sponsored by: Washington Economic Development Commission
Legislative Building – State Reception Room
Estimated attendance: 40

Head Start and ECEAP Advocacy Day Rally
Time: 2:30 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Sponsored by: Washington State Association of Head Start and ECEAP
West Campus
Estimated attendance: 400

American Indian Lobby Day
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sponsored by: Spirit of the Red Road
Legislative Building – Columbia Room; North Steps; Rotunda
Estimated attendance: 200

THURSDAY, MARCH 14
Take a Stand for Justice: Rachel Corrie – 10 Years
4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.
Sponsored by: The Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice
Legislative Building – Columbia Room
Estimated attendance: 50

Legislative Day Orientation
9 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Sponsored by: Washington Association of Landscape Professionals
General Administration Auditorium
Estimated attendance: 25

FRIDAY, MARCH 15
Latino Legislative Day
8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sponsored by: Latino Civic Alliance
Flag Circle – Lawn; General Administration Building; Legislative Building – Columbia Room; North Steps
Estimated attendance: 800-1000

Special Concert
1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Sponsored by: Abundant Life Apostolic Church
Sylvester Park, Olympia
Estimated attendance: 150

SATURDAY, MARCH 16
Homelessness and Hunger Awareness
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Sponsored by: The Evergreen State College/Washpirg
Legislative Building – North Steps
Estimated attendance: 200

Rachel: The person and the continuing struggle
1 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Sponsored by: Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice
Sylvester Park, Olympia
Estimated attendance: 100

Dental Dash
10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Sponsored by: Willamette Dental Group
Heritage Park – 5th and Water Street lawns
Estimated attendance: 250

SUNDAY, MARCH 17
Chamber Music Concert

2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
PULSE concert series
Legislative Building – Rotunda
Estimated attendance: 50

Remembering Rachel
Time: 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Sponsored by: Olympia Movement for Justice and Peace
Sylvester Park, Olympia
Estimated attendance: 200

 

In your service,

Dan Kristiansen

State Representative Dan Kristiansen, 39th Legislative District
RepresentativeDanKristiansen.com
426A Legislative Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
dan.kristiansen@leg.wa.gov
360-786-7967 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000