Dear Friends and Neighbors,
I have been privileged to meet with a lot of people from back home including the students from River Homelink, an alternative program operated by the Battle Ground School District. And, WALA STARS (Washington Association for Learning Alternatives, Success, Teamwork, Achievement, Recognition, and Self-Esteem.) You can see this great group of kids standing with me in the picture to the right.
Legislation I support
I am co-sponsoring legislation aimed at unleashing private sector innovation, removing government barriers to small business and championing government efficiency and transparency for our community. This principled legislation will benefit our families, district and our quality of life. Here is just a sample of legislation we are focusing on for you in Clark County:
- Would allow utilities, that have implemented efficiency improvements, to apply some surplus electricity from their efforts toward the renewable resources requirement. House Bill 1347 would help companies to meet their obligations instead of buying unnecessary energy in order to satisfy the requirement.
- Would require Washington to either approve or deny building permits in 90 days or less. House Bill 1236 would help get Washington working by decreasing unnecessary waiting periods and discouraging employers.
- Would require agencies to respond to applications within a certain amount of time and sets standards for their decision making process. House Bill 1478 would create predictability for business and help make our state more employer friendly.
- Would give people a break from paying sales tax for back-to-school items. House Bill 1329 also studies the impact of this sales tax “holiday” to see if it can be continued indefinitely without greatly damaging the state budget. This bill gives parents a little extra help to afford important school items for their children.
These are just some of the ways that I am working to reduce big government, help get Washington working and increase the quality of life in our communities. If you would like to hear more about the bills I am co-sponsoring or get information on other legislation please visit my Web site at: houserepublicans.wa.gov/vick
Bills that are in committee
As I mentioned to you last week, order to keep you informed, I will be sending out a short overview of legislation that could impact you. The following bills will be heard this week. This can aid you as you make knowledgeable decisions regarding your government. You can find a quick overview of how a bill becomes law here.
- Coal Transition Power – Two bills would modify the Energy Independence Act to support coal. House Bill 1221 and House Bill 1222 will be heard in the Environment Committee at 8:00 a.m.
- Regulatory Freedom & Accountability Act – This bill creates a three-year moratorium on formal and informal rulemaking by state agencies, except in certain, specified instances. House Bill 1163 will be heard in Government Operations and Elections at 8:00 a.m.
- Firearm Legislation – a variety of legislation addressing the use and sale of weapons will be heard in Judiciary Committee at 8:00 a.m. House bills 1147, 1588, 1612 and 1676 are scheduled.
- Veteran's Preference for Employment – This bill would give veteran status for public employment positions as soon as a solider receives separation orders that indicate an honorable discharge. House Bill 1537 will be heard in Government Operations and Elections Committee at 1:30p.m.
- Property for Affordable Housing – This bill allows certain public entities to sell, lease, or exchange real property for less than fair market value to certain eligible organizations. House Bill 1563 will have a hearing in Community Development and Housing & Tribal Affairs at 8:00 a.m.
- Expanding Child Care & Early Learning Programs – Both of the bills establish programs to study child care and increase budget costs. House Bill 1546 and House Bill 1723 will be heard at 1:30 p.m. in Early Learning and Human Services Committee.
- Waivers from 180-day School Year – This bill would ensure that the minimum instructional hour offerings shall not be waived. House Bill 1492 will be heard in Education Committee at 1:30 p.m.
In closing I would like to send my thoughts and prayers to the 500 students and 50 employees of Crestline Elementary. The school burnt down in the early morning hours of Feb. 3. Crestline was a longtime presence in our community as it was opened to students in 1973. And, my appreciation goes out to all the volunteers who have stepped forward to ensure that students can continue learning – with their original teachers – despite this unfortunate event.
I hope this e-mail has been informative for you. If you have any questions or comments please do not hesitate to contact me. My door is always open. As the session progresses I will continue to send you e-mails like these that let you know about the specific work I am doing on behalf of constituents back home. Please feel free to pass this along to others you think would be interested, and encourage them to sign-up here. You can also watch my latest legislative update video by clicking here.