Dear Friends and Neighbors,
The 2015 legislative session is now in full swing and I'm down in Olympia for the next 105 days. As I travelled throughout the district this past year, I consistently heard two main themes from you: don't raise my taxes and keep your hands off my guns!
I'm determined to keep fighting for these goals!
There's been much talk about our state budget and Gov. Inslee's call to raise state spending by 15 percent and raise your taxes by around $1.5 billion. While I admit there are challenges ahead in writing our state's next two-year operating budget, we have to remember tax revenues are projected to grow by nearly $3 billion (more than an 8 percent increase) since the last time we wrote an operating budget. It is my belief our state should live within its means, and taking more money from the hands of our hardworking taxpayers is not the right way to go!
Our Washington State Constitution says for the security of a free state and to protect our own lives, our right to keep and bear arms shall not be impaired. I swore to uphold that constitution as well as the U.S. Constitution, which says 'shall not be infringed.' Clearly, I-594 both impairs and infringes our inalienable right to protect ourselves with guns.
To that end, I cosponsored a bill to fully repeal I-594 in its entirety (House Bill 1245). You can call the chair of the House Judiciary Committee at (360) 786-7930 to ask that this bill be given a hearing. If this bill is not given a hearing, you can expect multiple proposals targeting problems caused by I-594. Bills to help widows and widowers, museums, ranges, and small businesses that fix, engrave, adjust guns or that build accessories or holsters. The list of people hurt by this initiative is extensive and growing, but the current political makeup of the House is not likely to give enough 'yes' votes to overturn it. There is a possibility it will be overturned by the court as unconstitutional. I will keep you posted.
Remember, folks, this is YOUR government! And I want to make sure you have every opportunity to be involved in what goes on in Olympia. Accessibility to legislative information and action is paramount to being an involved citizenry. Here are a few ways you can stay connected this year:
- Capitol Buzz – A daily, electronic clip service by House Republicans. Click here to subscribe.
- The Current – An online publication from House Republicans to include you in the legislative process. Click here to subscribe.
- Video updates – Every other week, I record a new legislative video update with the latest news from the Legislature. You can view my reports here on YouTube.
- Capitol Report – A three-minute, weekly radio program (aired weekly on KSVR in the Skagit Valley) that discusses current issues of the 39th District and the state. Click here to sign up for my RSS podcast. You can also get all of the Washington House Republican Capitol Report programs on your iPhone and iPad through the iTunes store by clicking here.
- Check out my website – www.representativeelizabethscott.com. From this link, you can get more information about me, the bills I've sponsored and view my news releases.
- Photos – Access my photo gallery here.
- TVW – The state's own version of C-Span, TVW broadcasts floor and committee action live. You can also watch on your computer, smartphone or tablet: www.tvw.org
- Legislature's website – You can get bill reports, committee agendas and information about upcoming activities in the Legislature at: www.leg.wa.gov
Please share this e-newsletter with everyone you know and encourage them to sign up for it from my website at: www.representativeelizabethscott.com.
On Tuesday, Feb. 3 at 6:00 p.m. my seatmate, Rep. Dan Kristiansen, and I will be holding a telephone town hall meeting for all 39th District citizens. Please dial (360) 350-6256 to participate. These forums act like a radio call-in show and serve as an excellent way for us to communicate with folks back home while we're in session. You can take part in answering our survey, ask questions over the phone by pressing star (*), or just listen in from the comfort of your own home. These events have proven very successful in the past. I hope you can join us.
Thank you again for the honor of representing you in Olympia. Please contact me with your thoughts, questions or concerns about state government. My office is here to serve you!
436 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
(360) 786-7816 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000