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Friends and Neighbors,

Due to election-year restrictions, this is the first email update I’ve been able to send to you since last May. This is also the first email update I’ve written since representing the newly drawn 20th Legislative District. All legislative districts are redrawn every ten years based on population changes and those change are made by the state’s bipartisan Washington State Redistricting Commission. You can confirm your legislative district by visiting this website.  

I’ll continue to send you email updates, whether you are a constituent or have been redistricted outside the boundaries of the 20th Legislative District. It’s an important part of my job to communicate about what’s happening in your citizen Legislature. I also enjoy doing it.

That said, I also respect your time. If for any reason you want to unsubscribe from this email update, you can always do so at the bottom of this email and future ones.    

2023 legislative session is underway  

The 105-day legislative session began at noon on Monday, with opening ceremonies in the Washington State House of Representatives. This is the first time since 2020 that family, friends, all staff, and the public were allowed to be on the Capitol Campus and in the House chambers. Pandemic-related protocols severely limited activities and public involvement the last two legislative sessions. 

Most importantly, you are now allowed to be on the Capitol Campus during the 2023 legislative session to visit, lobby, rally, testify in committee, and exercise your constitutional rights. I think this is so important to our legislative process and development of public policy. I encourage you to be involved. Here are some resources you might find useful:

Governor’s State of the State address, Republican perspective  

On Tuesday, Gov. Inslee gave his annual State of the State address to a joint session of the Legislature. The Republican perspective was provided by my seatmate, Rep. Peter Abbarno. He discussed the minority party’s priorities, including real solutions for affordability/tax relief, public safety, housing, and empowering all families. Peter also highlighted the failures of many policies and how the status quo is unacceptable. I encourage you to watch both speeches.

Working together in the Washington State Legislature

One thing is clear: We need Republicans and Democrats working together if we are going to address our state’s biggest problems. The margins in the Washington State House of Representatives are 58 Democrats and 40 Republicans. The numbers in the Washington State Senate are 29 Democrats and 20 Republicans.

Like in the years past, Republicans are again offering real solutions which contrast to the majority party’s policies. Where there is an opportunity for bipartisan collaboration, we will be at the table and ready to work. But, Republicans will work to defeat any bills or policies we believe are bad for our communities and state.

House committee assignments

I was provided my House committee assignments in mid-December. I appreciate the opportunity to again be the ranking member on the House Finance Committee, which can best be described as the “tax policy” committee. It considers issues relating to local and state taxes, exemptions from taxes, and changes in the administration of taxes. Here, I will continue to work to hold the line on any tax increases and again fight for tax relief – including my property tax relief legislation. I also think state lawmakers should consider other broad-based tax relief, including a state sales tax reduction.

I’m also resuming my roles on the House Transportation and Agriculture and Natural Resources committees.

As for additional responsibilities, I continue to serve on the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council. This council produces economic and revenue forecasts, which help to inform the Legislature on operating budget decisions. I also continue to work on the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee (JLARC) and Joint Transportation Committee (JTC).

Staying in touch   

My plan is to send these email updates out every other Friday during the 2023 legislative session. If there is important and timely information to share, I might modify this schedule. I also plan to record videos every two weeks and include the YouTube links in these email updates. You can find and view these videos here. I welcome your feedback on these communications.

If you ever have any questions, concerns, or ideas to share, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Email is best. If you call, you might be greeted by my new legislative assistant, Christina McNair. We look forward to hearing from you.    

Sincerely,


Ed Orcutt

State Representative Ed Orcutt, 20th Legislative District
RepresentativeEdOrcutt.com
408 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
ed.orcutt@leg.wa.gov
(360) 786-7990 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000