(360) 786-7686|Steve.Hobbs@leg.wa.gov

Monthly Archives: May 2013

Guest Editorial by Sen. Hobbs: Voting my conscience and for my district’s beliefs

May 22nd, 2013|

The guest editorial below was written by Sen. Steve Hobbs and was published on May 21 in the Lake Stevens Journal. You can also read the article here.

Lake Stevens is more than a place I live. It’s a community my family and I are proud to call home.

I went to kindergarten here and graduated from Lake Stevens High School. Following my active duty stint in the Army, I returned to Lake Stevens to raise my family. I wanted my kids to grow up in the same town I did and share in the same love of community service I learned here. It is an honor and privilege to represent my childhood home and serve our community as your senator.

I have always felt that a legislator should not only vote his or her conscience, but should vote in a way that is representative of his or her district. As you know, ours is a swing district with an equal amount of Republicans and Democrats which is why the 44th is represented in Olympia by a trio of legislators with diverse political views.

That’s why I vote the way I do in Olympia. It’s also why I’ve become a target of outside special interest groups that have descended on our district, specifically on our hometown of Lake Stevens, because our political agenda is not in lockstep with their political agenda.

These groups share many of the same beliefs as you and I. But because we believe in a different approach toward some of our shared goals, these outside groups have inundated our community with phone calls, emails, and even knocks on your door to mislead you about my priorities and values.

I am a moderate—some have even jokingly called me a radical moderate—which I believe is an accurate way to represent our district. As a moderate I believe no one party holds the deed to good ideas, but my moderate beliefs and actions make me a consistent target of special interest groups on the extreme fringes of both the left and right.

These far left and far right fringe groups are well funded and well organized. But don’t be fooled by glossy handouts and well-rehearsed talking points. If you ever have a question about why I voted the way I did, please contact me directly.

We are proud of our independent spirit in Lake Stevens. We don’t allow outside special interest groups or their money to dictate our beliefs. I will continue to represent you and your family in Olympia in a way that reflects our values in Lake Stevens and Snohomish County as a whole.

You are the only special interest group I am beholden to.

Sen. Steve Hobbs is serving his second term in the State Senate, representing all or parts of Lake Stevens, Mill Creek, Everett, Marysville, Snohomish and unincorporated Snohomish County. You can reach Sen. Hobbs at his Lake Stevens office at 425-334-2092 or at his Olympia office at 360-786-7686.

Hobbs’ “Facebook Bill” signed by Gov. Inslee

May 21st, 2013|

A bill that will protect the privacy of Washingtonians who wish to keep their social media passwords to themselves and away from their employers was signed into law Tuesday by Gov. Jay Inslee.

Senate Bill 5211, sponsored by Sen. Steve Hobbs, D-Lake Stevens, would make it illegal for any employer or potential employer in the state to request a password or any related account information for the purpose of gaining access to any social networking site maintained by a current or prospective employee.

Aspects of the bill, which Hobbs first proposed during the 2012 legislative session, were negotiated by the ACLU and business and tech interests. You can view a complete rundown of protections contained within the bill here.

“I’m pleased that all sides were able to come together, work out their differences and agree on a bill that protects everyone involved,” Hobbs said. “Privacy shouldn’t be a thing of the past that we are forced to sacrifice every time technology moves forward.”

Washington is now the eighth state to have this type of law on the books. Similar measures are being considered in 33 other states according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Governor signs Hobbs’ bill encouraging use of specialty courts to aid returning veterans

May 15th, 2013|

Current research indicates one in five veterans suffer from some type of behavioral health issue once they return to civilian life.

Which is why Sen. Steve Hobbs, D-Lake Stevens, sponsored Senate Bill 5797 which encourages the use of specialty courts in the state, with an emphasis on the use of Veterans Treatment Courts. The bill was signed by Gov. Jay Inslee on Wednesday.

“The transition back to civilian life can be a difficult one for our veterans,” said Hobbs, who served in the conflicts in Iraq and Kosovo. “The issues facing our veterans are hard to understand for someone who hasn’t gone through it. My hope is that by encouraging the use of courts that specialize in the issues facing our veterans we can help ease that transition.”

VTCs are located in Clark, Thurston, Spokane, Pierce and King Counties. These courts provide opportunities for rehabilitation, rather than incarceration, for veterans and service members experiencing behavioral health problems.

Specialty courts exist in 24 counties and address a variety of issues including mental health, substance abuse, truancy, homelessness and domestic violence to name just a few. Studies have shown that the use of specialty courts result in lower levels of recidivism.