Greetings from Olympia!
I wanted to give you a legislative update as we are 1/3 of the way through the 105-day 2019 legislative session.
This year provides a bit of change as I transition from serving you in the House of Representatives to the Senate. The culture is somewhat different. This transition is often humorously described as moving from the junior varsity to the varsity squad, which turns out to be a not completely inaccurate description.
As an incoming freshman in the Senate, I have been appointed the ranking Republican member of the Senate Higher Education and Workforce Development Committee. My other committee assignments include serving on the Early Learning and K-12 Education Committee and Law and Justice Committee.
Last week Olympia and Western Washington saw snow blanket most of the region, causing the Legislature to take a “Snow Day” on Monday. The bright side is that it provided one less legislative day to raise your taxes! Hearings resumed on Tuesday and I have been busy reading bills, visiting with constituents and hearing from stakeholders on the issues that have come before me in committee hearings.
I am pleased that my first bill passed off the Senate floor last week (read more about the bill below). Typically, a new member’s first Senate floor speech is on their first bill. However, as ranking member on the Higher Education and Workforce Development Committee, I was responsible to speak on bills having passed out of Higher Education and Workforce Development Committee. As the Legislature emphasizes procedure and protocol, I received a friendly roast from the members of the Senate when it was time for me to give an “official” first speech on my first bill. No one would buy that this really was my first floor speech….