(360) 786-7636|Dean.Takko@leg.wa.gov

Sen. Takko Newsroom

2019 Session Report

Dear friends and neighbors,

Now that we’ve finished the legislative session–with the first on-time budget in a decade–I’m glad to report back to you about what we have been working on this year. Ever since I came to Olympia, I’ve been focused on making sure the 19th District has a strong voice in our state government.

This year, we made important investments that will pay off for us and for our children and grandchildren. We invested in special education in schools, better mental health care, scholarships for those who can’t afford college, and a major new forest health and wildfire suppression and
prevention program.

Two bills I’m particularly proud of sponsoring and passing this year will prepare our state government for natural disasters. I grew up between the mouth of the Columbia River and Aberdeen. That’s ground zero for the Cascadia Subduction Zone. No one wants to think of a big earthquake
coming, but we’re past due. If the worst does come, these bills will allow us to have a functional government when people will need help the most.

In addition, I’m very happy that the capital construction budget funds $98 million in projects in communities across our district. A few highlights include:

• $4.4 million for fish habitat restoration along the Grays River, Fossil Creek, Harlow’s Creek, Lower Satsop River, and Rue Creek
• $814,000 for culvert replacement along Delameter Creek and King Creek
• $1.03 million to improve Tam O’Shanter Park
• $1 million to modernize the Port of Ilwaco Boatyard
• $705,000 to renovate a new space for the police station in Long Beach
• $500,000 for Gateway Center in Grays Harbor
• $165,000 to restore the Cathlamet Pioneer Building

It is an honor to represent you in the Legislature. Please reach out anytime. The more I hear from you, the better our work in Olympia can reflect our shared values.

All my best,

Senator Dean Takko

June 11th, 2019|Uncategorized|

House passes Takko natural disaster bills

OLYMPIA – The Washington State House of Representatives voted today to pass two measures to ensure governmental continuity in the event of a natural disaster.

Senate Bill 5012, sponsored by Sen. Dean Takko (D-Longview), expands the Continuity of Government Act to apply to natural catastrophes and requires the Washington Military Department to develop a program for state and local government agencies to plan for such events. Current law provides for continuity of government only in the event of enemy attack.

“I grew up between the mouth of the Columbia River and Aberdeen. That’s ground zero for the Cascadia Subduction Zone,” said Takko. “We hate to think of a big earthquake coming, but we’re past due for one. If the worst does come and we have an earthquake, volcanic eruption, or tsunami, this measure will allow us to have a functional government when people will need help the most.

“Last year, this issue got hung up on the last day of session. I’m glad that the House has moved earlier this year.”

SB 5012 passed by a vote of 90-8.

Because the state constitution allows the Legislature to provide for the continuity of government only in case of enemy attack, a constitutional amendment is also necessary. Constitutional amendments require a two-thirds supermajority in both houses and approval by a majority of voters.

Senate Joint Resolution 8200 proposes an amendment to Article II section 42 of the state constitution to authorize the Legislature to enact these measures to ensure continuity of government during natural catastrophes. It passed by a vote of 91-7.

Having received a minor amendment in the House, SB 5012 now returns to the Senate for reconsideration. SJR 8200 has passed the Legislature and will go to the ballot in the next state general election for a vote of the people.

April 17th, 2019|Uncategorized|

E-News – Telephone Town Hall – Monday, March 4

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Please join Rep. Brian Blake and me for a chance to chat by phone.

WHAT: A town hall by telephone–a chance for you to ask questions of your local lawmakers.

WHEN: 6 p.m. Monday, March 4

WHY:  The 19th District is huge, and we’ve found that town halls by telephone are convenient and save folks the long drive to Aberdeen or Longview or Olympia to talk to their lawmakers. This is another way to keep in touch.

HOW: You should get a phone call at 6 p.m. All you need to do is stay on the line to participate. Press *3 at any time to ask a question.

If you don’t get a call, you can join the call from this website, or dial 1-877-229-8493 and use the ID code 116278 to join in.

The town hall will last until 7 p.m. Hope to hear your voice!

And if you can’t make it on the phone next Monday, you can always contact me through the information in the right sidebar.


Senator Dean Takko

March 1st, 2019|E-News|

For this Washington’s sake, stop this trade war

From the Longview Daily News

The federal government’s trade policy is kicking our state’s economy in the teeth.

Our prosperity here in southwest Washington has always been built on natural resources — from the timber industry that first brought settlers to Aberdeen, to fishing and crabbing along the Columbia River and in Willapa Bay.

What many people don’t realize is that we’re also the gateway to Asia for exports from all across Washington. You can’t get wheat from the Palouse to the huge market in China without shipping it through Longview or Kalama or Vancouver.

In fact, right now, you can’t get our wheat to that huge market in China at all. Thanks to the tariff war started by President Trump, Washington-grown wheat exports to China plummeted from 270,000 metric tons in 2017 to zero since May of last year. In 2017 alone, Washington wheat exported to China was worth $67.5 million, and the total value of all wheat shipped to China through southwest Washington ports was $248 million.

Wheat and barley farming supports more than 11,000 jobs in Washington. What happens to those jobs as this trade war escalates and threatens the health of our wheat industry? And that’s just the beginning. There’s also the loss of hundreds of millions of dollars of exports of cherries, apples, dairy, and soybeans. And the list goes on.

It’s not just our dryland farmers that are in danger. Washington is the most trade-dependent state in the Union, with 40 percent of our jobs tied to trade.

China is the second-largest consumer of Washington seafood, buying more than $154 million worth in 2017. That’s a big haul of salmon, Dungeness crab, and clams, a lot of it caught and processed in the 19th District. Westport is consistently one of the top 20 ports in the nation for commercial seafood landings, but now this important industry is threatened. Since Trump’s trade war started, China has retaliated with a 25-percent tariff on American seafood.

Around here, we all know how damaging overactive state regulators can be to our shellfish harvest. I’ve been fighting that battle on behalf of Pacific County’s shellfish farmers, and we’re forcing the state to listen and to respect the thousands of family-wage jobs that those farmers support.

We have to keep our eye out for other threats to our economy and our way of life, no matter where they come from. A trade policy run by whim is a dangerous thing to the regular people of the 19th who have to plan their lives, run their businesses, and pay their federal income tax.

My colleagues and I have introduced a measure in the state Senate calling on President Trump and Congress to stop this destructive trade war. They should suspend the new tariffs they have imposed on Chinese trade goods, stop the posturing, and work on a long-term trade agreement that will allow Washington to resume the trade that has been needlessly and recklessly interrupted.

It’s time to re-open the gates.

Dean Takko is a resident of Longview and is the Democratic state senator for the 19th Legislative District.


February 28th, 2019|Uncategorized|

Senate passes Takko legislation to boost tourism statewide

Bipartisan legislation establishing a new statewide Tourism Marketing Authority (WTMA) passed the Washington state Senate Saturday.

The bill would direct the group to develop and implement a statewide tourism-marketing plan to drive tourism dollars to all parts of the state.

“The natural and diverse beauty found in every corner of Washington, from Wahkiakum to Pend Oreille, is unrivaled,” said Sen. Dean Takko, D-Longview and sponsor of Senate Bill 5251. “The economic boom in the Puget Sound continues to bring in new residents and visitors from around our country and the world. This legislation will encourage our new neighbors, and many more, to explore the wonders of our state, all the while bringing much-needed dollars into rural communities.”

Washington state closed its tourism office in 2011 to cut costs during the Great Recession. Currently, Washington is the only state in the country without a coordinate tourism program.

“Our state has so much to offer when it comes to tourism opportunities,” said Warnick, R-Moses Lake. “Tourism done this way is an export that benefits local communities directly. It benefits small retailers, outdoor recreation, state parks, and ultimately the taxpayers of Washington. This is an innovative way for the private sector and government to collaborate and bring needed investment to all areas of our state.”

The WTMA would be funded by directing 0.2 percent of retail sales taxes collected on lodgings, car rentals, and restaurants.

SB 5251 passed out of the Senate on a unanimous vote and now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.


February 12th, 2018|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    Takko to chair Senate Local Government Committee in new Democratic majority

Takko to chair Senate Local Government Committee in new Democratic majority

OLYMPIA – Sen. Dean Takko, D-Longview, will chair the Local Government Committee in the Washington State Senate. Securing a one-seat majority after a special election victory in Washington’s 45th Legislative District, Senate Democrats will now set the agenda for policy committees and floor voting in the coming session.

Now in his third year as a member of the Senate, Takko was selected by his colleagues to lead the Local Government Committee thanks to his record of accomplishment as an effective legislator and working to find hard-wrought compromise.

“We owe it to the people of Washington to lead by example and show what effective governance can do for our state,” said Takko. “I am committed to making the state a better partner with local governments and to reducing the barriers created by excessive bureaucracy. We can do better together.”

Takko will also serve as vice chair of the Senate Economic Development & Trade Committee and as a member of the Transportation Committee. During his tenure in the House, he also served as the chair of Local Government.

November 15th, 2017|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    Legislation to encourage renewable energy use and rural development becomes law

Legislation to encourage renewable energy use and rural development becomes law

OLYMPIA – Gov. Jay Inslee today signed legislation encouraging the production of renewable energy at older, fire-generated biomass facilities.

Senate Bill 5128, sponsored by Sen. Dean Takko, D-Longview, will allow qualified mills to sell excess power generated by the burning of biomass, such as the fiber remains from timber or pulp, to local public utilities districts. The new law will help older facilities lower power costs by using renewable energy sources.

“When businesses make the effort to invest in renewable energy, we ought to find ways to meet them halfway and make it easier to operate at lower costs,” Takko said. “Allowing paper mills like Longview’s KapStone, which employs 1,100 people, to sell off excess power will help keep jobs in our rural communities.”

The law also creates a provision that power generated by biomass and purchased by local utilities districts qualify as renewable energy, ensuring compliance with Washington’s Energy Independence Act. Expanding the act to include biomass as eligible renewable energy in this way will encourage other facilities to make capital investments to retrofit older facilities.

“Thank you to the advocates, my colleagues in the Legislature and the governor for making this bill, years in the works, a reality,” said Takko.

SB 5128 passed unanimously from the Senate and on a 91-7 vote in the House of Representatives.

May 16th, 2017|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    Senate capital budget proposes $7.7 million for South Bend school construction

Senate capital budget proposes $7.7 million for South Bend school construction

OLYMPIA – The South Bend School District would receive $7.7 million dollars for school construction projects in the 2017 capital budget proposed today by the Senate. The funds would be allotted as a part of a rural school grant program.

“Smaller rural school districts have historically faced barriers in the bond application process even when the need for our students is just as great as in other parts of the state,” said Sen. Dean Takko, D-Longview. “I cannot thank the leaders in Pacific County who have advocated for this needed school bond enough; your voices made a difference in Olympia.”

In addition to new money for school construction, the proposed budget also includes dollars for completion of the Longview Shay Pavilion, dredging at the Westport Marina, parking improvements at the Tam O’Shanter Athletic Arena, and upgrades for the Naselle Hatchery, among others.

The proposal will be heard before the Senate Ways & Means Committee this afternoon.

March 28th, 2017|Uncategorized|

19th LD Telephone Town Hall – March 28

Who – 19th Legislative District State Senator Dean Takko & State Representative Brian Blake.

What – Telephone town hall meeting.

When – 6:05– 7:05 PM Tuesday, March 28, 2017.

Where – Calls will go out to thousands of homes throughout the 19th Legislative District. Residents will be able to listen live and speak with their lawmakers. Those who do not receive a call can participate by dialing 877-229-8493 and entering the ID Code 116278.

Alternatively, the telephone town hall can be live-streamed:


Or people can sign up to reserve a line:


Why – To provide constituents with the opportunity to ask questions on issues ranging from education funding, healthcare and public safety to transportation, the economy and the state budgets.

March 24th, 2017|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    ‘Levy cliff’ extension gives districts certainty, Legislature must now fund McCleary

‘Levy cliff’ extension gives districts certainty, Legislature must now fund McCleary

OLYMPIA – Responding to the passage of Senate Bill 5023, which averts the largest cut to Washington public schools in state history, Sen. Dean Takko, D-Longview, released the following statement:

“I’ve heard from parents, teachers, and school administrators loud and clear that we could not wait any longer to give our school districts the certainty they need to budget for the coming school year.

“Although I wish we could have passed this bill weeks ago, I am glad we’ve come to resolution on the ‘levy cliff’ so we can give the full attention of the Legislature to fairly funding Washington’s schools.

“We cannot waste one more minute to give our kids every opportunity they deserve.”

March 8th, 2017|Uncategorized|