Dear friends and neighbors,
This is the second week of legislative session and big things are already happening. We’re already holding hearings on major legislation around affordable housing, education, public safety, and just about every important issue before the Legislature this year. I wanted to talk with you about another of my big priorities this year – helping support our local media and newspapers.
Supporting Our Local News Media
A healthy news media is such an important part of our democracy. From national and global news all the way down to local papers in small communities, a strong press corps is essential to helping inform the public and holding elected officials (like me!) accountable. One of the most disturbing trends over the past decade I’ve been in office has been the decline and demise of many of the small, local newspapers that provide important news about what’s going on in our communities. We see the consequences every day, with the spread of misinformation and the silly minutia of social networks that now take up so much of our media bandwidth.
This year, I’m pushing a bill to help local news media by cutting their B&O taxes. I want to make sure that legitimate news outlets, whether print, TV, radio, or online, aren’t getting crushed by a tax burden they can’t handle, and that they can keep the reporters on staff that we all rely on to keep us informed about what’s going on in our communities.
The Seattle Times editorial board wrote about my bill here – I encourage you to read it. I also recorded a short video on the issue and posted it to my Facebook page, and you can check that out and share it with your social networks as well.
It’s a small tax break that doesn’t cost the state very much money at all. I think supporting a free press is worth it.
College in the High School Update
In last week’s e-newsletter, I wrote to you about my bill expanding access to College in the High School, a great program for allowing high school students to take college courses in their own high school and get both high school and college credit for them. I wanted to follow up with an update – the bill passed out of committee yesterday and is moving forward through the process. Great news, and I’m more hopeful than ever about this bill’s chances of becoming law!
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions or feedback about any of the issues coming before the Legislature this year, feel free to contact me at any time at email@example.com. I look forward to staying in touch with you.
Take care and stay safe,