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Friends and Neighbors,
Week three of the 105-day legislative session is coming to a close. State lawmakers have been immersed in committee work, including the three House committees I serve on, as we work toward our first self-imposed deadline on February 17: policy committee cutoff. You can learn more about these legislative deadlines by visiting this session cutoff calendar.
My proposed legislation
Last week, I introduced ten bills and one House Joint Memorial. This means I am the prime sponsor of the legislation. You can find the list of bills and descriptions below:
- House Bill 1482 would protect senior citizens' and disabled veterans' property tax exemption eligibility.
- House Bill 1483 would provide property tax relief by reducing both parts of the state property tax levies. This measure is part of the House Republican agenda — an affordability priority. I discuss this bill and the need for tax relief in my recent video update.
- House Bill 1484 would update the estate tax exclusion amount.
- House Bill 1485 would allow tow trucks to operate rear-facing blue lights for use only at the scene of an emergency or accident and use their intermittent or revolving red lights when reentering the roadway from the scene of an emergency or accident.
- House Bill 1486 would authorize military surplus vehicles to operate on public highways.
- House Bill 1487 would improve motorcycle safety by authorizing the use of the right shoulder of limited access roadways.
- House Bill 1488 would create a special license plate that supports working forests.
- House Bill 1489 would create a Mount St. Helens special license plate.
- House Bill 1490 would allow citizens with special dietary needs to get milk products directly from small producers.
- House Bill 1491 would prohibit unjustified employer searches of employee personal vehicles.
- House Joint Memorial 4001 would request the Washington State Transportation Commission to designate a section of roadway the Cowlitz County Deputy Sheriff Justin DeRosier Memorial Highway.
You can find all of the bills I have prime or secondary sponsored here.
More resources for participating in the legislative process
Just a reminder that there are several ways for you to be involved in the legislative session. In addition to what I sent you in my last email update, here are some other resources:
2022 Outstanding Legislator
Last November, I was chosen as the 2022 Outstanding Legislator for veterans and their families. Awards were also presented to others for Superior Service, Distinguished Service, and Team. The awards are co-sponsored by the Governor's Veterans Affairs Advisory Committee and the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs. As their news release states, the awards “recognize individuals who devote time and energy to improving the lives of Washington's Veterans and their families.”
I was presented the award in the Columbia Room in the Capitol Building on January 13. It is such a huge honor to be honored by those who have fought to defend the very freedoms we enjoy. While I thank them for the award, I also thank them for keeping us free.
The House Page Program is back
For the first time since 2020, I had the opportunity to sponsor a House page. The House Page Program was put on hold the last two legislative sessions due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Messina Occhino from Chehalis Middle School served as a House Page January 16-20. She assisted the Washington State House of Representatives with duties, including serving on the chamber floor and making deliveries, and attended Legislative Page School. I really appreciate Messina's efforts and being able to talk to her about her experiences here at the Legislature, as well as to learn about her plans for the future.
The House Page Program is a great opportunity for young people to learn about the Legislature, earn a little money, and get credit for up to 20 hours of community service. You can learn more from this FAQ webpage.
If you have any questions, concerns, or ideas to share, please contact my office. While email is preferred, I also welcome you to call or send me a letter.
408 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
(360) 786-7990 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000