Day of Remembrance
Today on the Senate floor we adopted Senate Resolution 8607, which recognizes the hurt and injustice against Japanese Americans, when, on this day in 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which authorized the United States military to forcibly remove and incarcerate more than 120,000 people of Japanese descent.
While we hold this day to acknowledge the mistreatment of those Japanese Americans, we must continue to address the persistent prejudice our Asian American communities still face.
The image featured here is of Japanese Americans Boarding Trains to Manzanar, California, one of ten in the country. In Washington, Japanese Americans from Bainbridge Island had less than one week to leave behind homes, friends, and family and report to detention centers like Camp Harmony on the grounds of the Washington State fair in Puyallup.
If you’d like to read the full resolution, introduced by my colleague Senator Bob Hasegawa, click here.
Senate Bill 5096 Update
I haven’t written about Senate Bill 5096 since my Week 1 newsletter so I thought it was time for an update, considering this bill has been significantly amended. You may have heard in the news that the Senate is considering a capital gains excise tax, Senate Bill 5096. After significant public feedback in committee hearings, we have revised the bill. Based on what we heard, a substitute bill was put together and heard in the executive session on February 16th.
The new bill is a 7% tax on profits over $250,000 from the sale of:
- stock or bonds
- personal property, or
- a small business.
This would not include:
- real estate,
- retirement accounts, or
- the sale of a family-owned small business with yearly revenue under $6M.
Fewer than 1% of the wealthiest Washingtonians would be affected by this tax, and the $550 million of revenue collected annually will go towards childcare programs and relief for low- and middle-income taxpayers. This is especially significant to me because families today pay an average of one-third of their income on childcare costs, which I believe is egregious and something our regressive tax structure should be adjusted to address.
I’m glad to say that the bill has been passed out of committee and awaits a floor vote in the Senate. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office. This kind of legislation can be dense, and we want to make sure you have all the information you need.
Meet my Office
Speaking of my office, I’d like for you to meet my staff. With my jam-packed schedule, they’re the first point of contact for all my constituents.
Meet our intern: Carmela
Carmela is a senior at Washington State University Vancouver, majoring in Social Sciences with concentrations in Political Science, Communications, and Criminal Justice. After graduation in May, Carmela hopes to attend graduate school in Portland, Oregon, or to find work at her local city hall, where she has interned in the past. In the office, Carmela answers constituent email, attends presentations and constituent and lobbyist meetings on behalf of the Senator, as well as writing the draft for our newsletter every week. If you call our office, prepare for Carlie to be on the other end of the call.
Meet our session aide: Danielle
Danielle is a recent graduate from UW who is heading off to American University in the fall to get her master’s degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution. After receiving her graduate degree, she plans to work in diplomacy affecting Middle Eastern geopolitics. She has been a part of my team since last session and spends her days scheduling appointments, getting constituents connected with state resources, coordinating stakeholders for my projects, and sorting my ever-growing email inbox.
Meet our legislative assistant: Noah
Noah has worked as my LA for five years now. He’s my only year-round staff member, so when we’re not in session he’s making everything happen. During session, he gets help from my other two staffers and serves as my liaison with other legislators, committee staff, and representatives from state agencies. He manages my schedule and makes sure my bills stay on track. He’s a walking encyclopedia of everything that goes on in my office and in the legislature as a whole.
How to participate in this legislative session:
Watch – Committee meetings, debates, and more can all be seen live or in a recording at TVW.org
Research – Look up legislation by lawmaker or by topic here.
Learn – Learn about the entire legislative process from start to finish here.
Testify – Visit here for an overview of the process. Written testimony is also an option, and you can also email me your story.
Get in touch – As always, please feel free to contact my office with any questions or comments.