Dear friends and neighbors:
With the 2022 legislative session concluded, I want to give you a brief overview of some highlights from this year.
As the state prepared to implement its new long-term care insurance program last fall, what was apparent to me when I voted against the new tax in 2019 became apparent to others. Voters across the state, regardless of political persuasion, expressed their desires for the new tax to be delayed or repealed. Fortunately, we took early action to delay implementation of the new long-term care tax. I hope this delay will either provide for critical structural changes so that voters feel they are getting what they pay for, or that the law is repealed in full.
Last year I supported efforts to change some of the laws around policing, to ensure that people’s rights are protected during encounters with law enforcement. As often happens, new laws can bring unintended consequences that need to be addressed in subsequent years with “clean-up” legislation. I worked with a bipartisan group of lawmakers to amend last year’s legislation to make sure law enforcement has the flexibility to maintain public safety and that the laws we pass in Olympia can be implemented in practice. These efforts have received bipartisan legislative support, along with support from our local cities and police departments.
A long-promised but never paid for project to complete Highway 18 over Tiger Mountain has been fully funded with excess reserves from the State General Fund, and without a gas tax increase. I couldn’t be happier to see this project happen for our community.
My goal to increase financial literacy education in our public schools has passed after many years of work. My Senate Bill 5720 represents the largest investment our state has ever made to equip kids with basic financial knowledge, and the returns to all these students over the course of their lives will be life-changing.
While there were many victories this year, there is always more unfinished work for the people of our community and state. We still have not done enough to increase the supply of housing or to reform the governor’s emergency powers to ensure adequate checks and balances. I hope to hear from you about the things impacting you and your family, and how I can best serve you in the State Senate.
Take care and stay safe,