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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

The biggest news of this year’s legislative session is not what Democrats have done, but what they have not done. Since January 11, six initiatives to the Legislature have been certified by the Secretary of State, each of which was signed by more than 400,000 Washingtonians.

When House Republicans presented the majority with six different opportunities to hold public hearings on the initiatives and give Washingtonians a voice, the response we got back is there isn’t enough time for hearings. I think that’s a big mistake. Our job as lawmakers is to listen to and serve people, and you deserve to be heard on these critical policy matters.

In this week’s video update, I talk about that and also highlight a bill I’ve sponsored that would eliminate the state Fish and Wildlife Commission and restructure the Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

House Bill 2434 would transfer all existing powers and duties of the Commission to a single director of WDFW appointed by the governor with Senate and House confirmation. This change would address concerns about the Commission’s effectiveness in fulfilling its mandate to “maximize fishing, hunting, and outdoor recreational opportunities compatible with healthy and diverse fish and wildlife populations.”

The reality is the Fish and Wildlife Commission has failed to live up to its promises and purpose. Decisions continue to be made contrary to the needs of both tribal and nontribal hunters and fishers as science is ignored and special interests are prioritized over the responsible management of our state’s natural resources. In my view, a single director accountable directly to the governor and Legislature would be better equipped to serve the needs of all who cherish Washington’s natural heritage.

In case you’re not aware, the six initiatives that have been certified by the Secretary of State are:

Initiative 2113: reverses the Democrats’ restrictive police pursuit law, restoring the ability of our men and women in law enforcement to engage in vehicular pursuits when there is reasonable suspicion a crime has been committed.

Initiative 2117: repeals the carbon tax passed by Democrats in 2021, which caused the price of gas to skyrocket, including to more than $5 per gallon last summer (Washington still has the third-highest gas prices in the nation).

Initiative 2081: establishes a “Parents’ Bill of Rights,” outlining various rights for parents and legal guardians of public schoolchildren, including access to educational materials, records, medical information, notifications, and the ability to opt-out of certain activities and classes.

Initiative 2109: repeals the capital gains income tax passed by Democrats in 2021.

Initiative 2111: prohibits state and local personal income taxes.

Initiative 2124: allows all Washington workers to opt-out of the Democrats’ long-term care insurance program and payroll tax, which is costing the average Washingtonian hundreds of dollars per year.

The numbers behind Washington’s decline

In his State of the State address this year, Governor Inslee declared: “The state of our state is stronger than ever.” The reality is Washington is facing more crises than ever. Watch:

House Republicans have solutions to these crises and will continue working to get them passed.

Contacting me

Please continue reaching out to me with your comments, questions and concerns. My email address is JT.Wilcox@leg.wa.gov, and my office number is (360) 786-7912.

It is an honor to serve you.

Sincerely,


J.T. Wilcox

State Representative J.T. Wilcox, 2nd Legislative District
RepresentativeJTWilcox.com
122A Legislative Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
jt.wilcox@leg.wa.gov
(360) 786-7912 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000