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PRIORITIES

Public Safety

Providing common-sense reforms

 

The number one responsibility of our elected officials is to protect the citizens’ individual rights and freedoms. I do believe a reasonable degree of security is necessary to allow for the exercise of these freedoms. I will always keep this in mind when weighing potential votes on legislation.

 

We must put families before felons by passing legislation that cracks down on criminal activity and keeps our homes and communities secure. We cannot coddle criminals, families should be safe.

 

Solutions that I support:

 

  • Increasing child abuse penalties and prevent convicted abusers from working with children.

  • Preventing public records abuses by prisoners who try to retaliate against police and corrections officers.

  • Toughening sentences on gangs, including gang intimidation, tagging and recruiting.

  • Restricting computer access for convicted incarcerated sex offenders.

  • Strengthening the supervision of sex offenders with GPS monitoring.

Jobs & Economy

Sensible solutions for the economy

Protecting existing jobs and promoting a business friendly environment to create new ones is a top priority of mine.
 

We all know that a healthy economy in our state depends on a vibrant job market. Washington’s burdensome taxes and regulations can get in the way of job creation, and all too often cause our employers to just hold on when they would rather be expanding. We need to look ahead and make Washington the best place in the World to locate a business for success.

 

Fostering a competitive economic climate that retains and attracts employers is critical. I will remain focused on stabilizing our state economy and putting our people back to work. This means ensuring businesses stay in Washington, through free market principles. We must work to preserve every job in the state by supporting policies that help employers and opposing policies that would kill jobs.

 

Legislation that I consider should be able to answer the question: Will it create private-sector jobs or will it hurt them? Everyone wants quality schools, safe communities and to take care of our most vulnerable citizens. A stronger economy is how we pay for these things. I am committed to removing the barriers and complex government red tape, thereby making Washington State attractive to companies all over the world.

Building a House

Housing

The housing market is a very important piece of the economic picture. Washington State covers over 42.59 MILLION acres, much of that we can consider real estate.

 

The economy and housing are closely linked. When we have a healthy economy and unemployment is low, houses sell more often and at a much faster pace. There are many jobs created when a home is sold, from painters to electricians, title companies, landscapers, inspectors and home centers all benefit when a house changes hands. The opposite is of course true when the economy is in a down turn.

 

I support legislation that:

 

  • Protects consumers and keeps housing affordable and available.

  • Protects citizen’s rights to use their land.

  • Does not tax people unfairly for property that they cannot use to its full capacity.

  • Keeps local decisions local.

Homeowners

Education

Washington’s paramount duty

 

Our state Constitution is clear: Education is the “paramount duty” of the state. I believe school funding must reflect this mandate. I support efforts to define all that is “basic education” and to reflect the realities of today’s classrooms and the unique needs of communities.

 

All children deserve the same opportunities. They deserve the best teachers and the best environment in which to thrive. Our future depends on their success, and we must give them nothing short of what we expect from them- greatness. We must equitably fund education across the state. I support legislation that provides property-poor school districts around the state with stable funding so that each student has the same opportunity, no matter where they live.

 

FUND EDUCATION FIRST

I believe Washington’s budget should fund education first. Ensuring education funding as the state’s top priority will move us closer to reaching our goal of quality schools that meet the needs of diverse student populations.

No State Income Tax

There are a lot of positives in avoiding a tax that suggests that you make less to pay less. Many of the states that do have an income tax have seen less income and fewer jobs available and those jobs that are out there tend to pay less.

 

Here are few interesting facts:

 

  • Since 1967, nine states have imposed an income tax. In those states, government spending growth increased an average of 41.8%.

  • Personal income growth decreased an average of 64.2% after enacting the new tax.

  • Projections show that if a State Income Tax were to be implemented the average salary of Washingtonians would be $5,740.00 lower than what they would expect to earn without an income tax.

  • States that do not have an income tax, are shown to collect less in taxes from the citizens overall as compared to those who have a state income tax and collect far more.

Of course as many of us have seen over the years that taxes don’t ever tend to trend down but go up instead. So even if we start out with a low tax, it is bound to inch its way up and on top of other taxes that you are already paying. It is unconstitutional to place a tax on some and not others. It is also an incentive to make less and be just under the tax level to avoid paying even more.

Many have thought that if we just tax the “rich” (who defines rich?) that it will be a fair tax. The problem with that is that the people, who are the ones that have a target on their backs to pay this new tax, can also afford to leave the state and avoid it. Those left behind will be the ones holding the bag and the tax. Can we really afford that?

So, what can we do to improve the economy in our state?

  • Reducing tax complexity by eliminating special interest exemptions and multiple, fluctuating tax rates. Washington small business owners cite tax complexity as a major barrier to their ability to succeed.

  • Lower overall tax rates to stimulate growth and development. By limiting tax exemptions, the state can reduce rates for all taxpayers, regardless of industry, occupation or special interest.

Instead of more trendy experiments we need to keep the people in mind and work together for viable solutions that will bring prosperity to everyone in Washington State while holding those elected accountable for the dollars they collect and spend.

Fiscal Responsibility

We must remember that every dollar the state spends comes from a hardworking taxpayer. I believe we should base our budgets on actual revenues- not hoped for revenues. I am listing several ideas below for getting our budget back on track and preventing future spending problems.

 

Establish a period of public and legislative review for the state's major appropriations bills. I support the "Budget Sunshine Act," which would require a five-day waiting period before either legislative body could vote on the final operating, capital, or transportation budgets.

 

In 2009 and in the 2010 special session, legislators had less than 24 hours to review the final operating budget (amounting to 500 pages or more) before taking a vote on the House floor. I believe one of the most important decisions I can make as your representatives is how to spend your money appropriately - this should take time. Shedding more light on the budget will allow myself and the other House Members opportunities to find waste to cut and more efficiencies- so we can save you money.

 

Another benefit to a five-day waiting period is that it allows you, the taxpayer, time to provide comments and suggestions. You're paying the bill; you have a right to see the receipt.

 

Require the Legislature to adopt a balanced budget. It comes as a shock to many that only the governor is required to PROPOSE a balanced budget. We should remove the temptation to borrow money through long-term bonds to pay for daily expenses. This credit card spending does not make any financial sense and only leads to more problems down the road.

Hydroelectric Power

Hydropower refers to the generation of electricity through the natural force of water, most often through a hydroelectric dam. I support recognizing hydropower as an eligible renewable resource, a designation many say would help reduce energy costs to consumers.

 

Hydropower is the most abundant and least expensive source of energy that’s available in Washington. There is no waste, it doesn’t create hazardous bi-products, and electricity can be generated constantly, so it’s much more reliable than wind or solar. New technology has now introduced more effective- fish friendly turbines, that we can retrofit our damns with and will lead to much higher efficiencies than we currently experience.

 

In order for the existing hydroelectric system to support all the new sources of energy, the region will have to build additional infrastructure and transmission lines to integrate this alternative energy into the grid and ensure regional electrical stability. Planning and construction could take five to 10 years and pass on considerable cost to consumers.

Hydroelectric Plant
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