Thank you to everyone who attended our town hall meeting in Spokane. It was exciting to see democracy in action with nearly 400 people in attendance sharing their legislative and community priorities.

If you were not able to attend the town hall, please don’t hesitate to call or email me anytime about the issues that matter most to you.

Now, I am excited to get back to work representing you as we enter the second half of this 105-day legislative session.

This week the Senate Republican’s budgets should be released. Next week House Democrats are scheduled to introduce their budgets. Stay tuned.

Complying with Federal Travel Requirements

If you have been in an airport recently, you may have noticed signs indicating that your Washington state driver’s license may soon not be valid for air travel due to the federal REAL ID Act.

To bring our state into compliance, legislation was recently voted out of the Senate that will allow Washington state’s enhanced driver’s licenses to be used for federal identification purposes. The price for these enhanced licenses will be reduced from the current levels, making them more accessible.

Regular driver’s licenses will still be available for drivers who do not care about air travel or who would rather use their passports when they fly.  The bill is currently in the House but I expect it to pass this session.

Levy Cliff Bill is a Win for Students and Schools

After weeks of negotiations, the Senate was finally able to pass the levy cliff bill – legislation that allows school districts to continue collecting local taxes at the current rate for another year. If we failed to extend this deadline, schools across the state would have had to slash their budgets by more than $350 million. Spokane schools, for instance faced a loss of $14 million in school funding.

While I am relieved we resolved this immediate problem, an even larger challenge looms: meeting our constitutional obligation to fully and fairly fund our schools. I continue to be one of the eight legislators participating in the four corner education funding negotiations and remain hopeful that the Legislature will agree on a bipartisan education funding solution that helps every student achieve their fullest potential.

Keep in Touch

I value your input as we work to improve opportunity and prosperity in Spokane and our state. Do not hesitate to contact me if you have a comment, idea or questions.

You can reach me by email or by phone at 360-786-7604.