Local business professionals attended the luncheon headed by six state legislators. Madeline Coats/staff photo

Local business professionals attended the luncheon headed by six state legislators. Madeline Coats/staff photo

Legislators discuss session at Bothell Kenmore chamber luncheon

The six lawmakers encouraged constituents to reach out to them when they are not in session.

The Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce held a luncheon with six Washington state legislators on July 10 to discuss highlights from this year’s legislative session.

The chamber hosted the event in order to discuss the interests of businesses and communities in collaboration with the state government.

The Legislature adjourned on April 28, ending a 105-day session. Substantial bills passed this year ranged from making daylight savings time permanent to raising the smoking age to 21.

Washington Democrats completed their second year as the majority leader and the six members of the panel represented the same party.

“This is the first time that we’ve had both the 1st and the 46th Districts here at the same time,” said moderator Kelly Snyder.

The 46th Legislative District is primarily comprised of north Seattle, Lake Forest Park and Kenmore. Sen. David Frockt, Rep. Gerry Pollet and Rep. Javier Valdez attended the luncheon to reflect on the legislative priorities for their region. Pollet emphasized their busy schedules at the capital and explained the need for residents to talk with their legislators during the interim.

“I would encourage people to spend time with your legislators when they are out of session. That is the time when they start making priorities for the budget and for legislation,” said Pollet.

The 1st Legislative District encompasses areas of Whatcom, Skagit and Snohomish counties, as well as about a third of King County. Sen. Derek Stanford, Rep. Shelley Kloba and Rep. Davina Duerr represented their district.

Stanford and Duerr had only been appointed to their positions for eight days by the day of the luncheon. Stanford, who previously held a seat in the House since 2011, replaced Guy Palumbo in the Senate on July 1 after he left to become a lobbyist for Amazon. Duerr, who is the deputy mayor of Bothell, was voted into the empty House position the same day.

While Duerr has not yet participated in a regular session at the Legislature, she did speak about visiting the capital during the winter to discuss I-405 funding and congestion in local transportation. She lobbied and testified at various committee meetings in support of Senate Bill 5748, which authorizes tolling on I-405 and bonding of toll revenue.

“I consider it a huge win and I think it will definitely make bus rapid transit successful,” said Duerr.

Other major topics brought up at the luncheon included the environment and climate change. Kloba co-sponsored a bill to create 100 percent renewable energy and move away from fossil fuels. In the next session, she aims to invest in car-charging infrastructure and affordability in order to make more of those vehicles available in the state.

“I think we have a very strong environmental ethic within the state,” said Frockt. He highlighted the importance of using legislation to facilitate toxic cleanups.

When discussing hate crimes, Valdez touched on his sponsorship of House Bill 1732 in regard to malicious harassment. Washington state now ranks third in terms of hate crimes, he said. The state is currently behind Sound Carolina and Washington, D.C.

“It’s not a secret that hate crimes are on the rise,” said Valdez. “We still have work to do.”

He is still working on addressing this issue, especially in relation to gender identity, race and other minority groups.

The six representatives will return to the state capital in January 2020 for a 60-day session.

In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@bothell-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.bothell-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

Legislators from the 1st and 46th Districts discussed the legislative session in a panel. Madeline Coats/staff photo

Legislators from the 1st and 46th Districts discussed the legislative session in a panel. Madeline Coats/staff photo

More in News

State Capitol Building in Olympia. File photo
Politicians get pay raises, state workers get furloughs

A citizens panel approved the hikes in 2019. Unable to rescind them, lawmakers look to donate their extra earnings.

Starting July 6, three road paving projects to prepare for

Two full road closures and night paving work is coming to Redmond Ridge at Novelty Hill Road, near Duvall, July 6 through August

Human remains in West Seattle identified

Bags of body parts were found in a suitcase along a West Seattle beach on June 19.

Governor Jay Inslee smiles and laughs Sept. 3, 2019, during a speech at the Lynnwood Link Extension groundbreaking in Lynnwood. A Thurston County judge ruled he exceeded his authority when he vetoed single sentences in the state transportation budget in 2019. (Olivia Vanni / Herald file)
Judge invalidates Gov. Inslee’s veto in roads budget

Lawmakers said the governor crossed a constitutional line.

King County cases among younger adults drives increase in COVID-19 numbers

Over half of all new cases are among people ages 20-39

Kirkland man found guilty of promoting prostitution in Eastside sex trafficking ring

Authorities say suspect ran “successful enterprise” for greater half of a decade.

Public and private universities, colleges, technical schools, apprenticeship programs and similar schools and programs may resume general instruction, including in-person classes and lectures, starting Aug. 1. Pictured: The University of Washington-Bothell campus. File photo
Universities and colleges may reopen in fall, governor says

His order requires masks and physical distancing, among other measures, to help prevent infections.

File photo/pexels.com
Renton man pleads guilty to one of state’s largest workers’ comp scams

The delivery driver was still working under his own name while receiving L&I pension, and owes the state almost $340,000.

Inslee forms state task force to address policing and racial justice

24 members includes families who have lost loved ones; police officials

Most Read