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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Democrats in the state House passed legislation this week that will increase the price of gas by at least 57 cents per gallon and diesel by 63 cents. Their low-carbon fuel standard is something Gov. Jay Inslee has wanted for several years. It promises to increase costs to families, truckers, farmers, ranchers, and small businesses around the state. Not to mention the price of goods as freight companies pass these increased costs on to consumers.

My colleagues in the House Republican Caucus and I spent two days on the House floor arguing against the measure in an effort to point out its many flaws. To no avail. This misguided policy was tried in California, and even that state has backed off their low-carbon fuel standard and is looking for a way out.

You can read more about the issue, including reports, statistics, what it means in detail, as well as view many of our floor speeches against the bill, here.

In addition, another west-side lawmaker introduced a bill this week to raise the gas tax by 9.7 cents per gallon starting in 2020 through 2029 to pay for fish barrier replacements. But the tax doesn't go away after 2029. It will continue to be collected and disappear into the bureaucracy of the Department of Transportation. Seems some in Olympia can't get enough of your money.

My bills
This week I introduced House Bill 2906 which directs the Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) to place more radio collars on wolves in problem packs:

The idea is to focus on problem wolf packs and require WDFW to have a strategy. We need to know where problem wolves are so that nonlethal measures have a better chance of working. There has been a lack of communication and focus within the department in recent years which has caused frustration on both sides of this issue.

You can read my press release on this bill here. You can read a story by the Capital Press on my bill here. If you want to know why I continue working on this issue, click here for a video I did at the end of the last legislative session. It will give you a pretty good picture of why this is important to me and the people I serve back home.

Telephone town hall
We will be having our 7th Legislative District telephone town hall on Wednesday, Feb. 5 at 6 p.m. Only households with landlines will receive an invitation phone call, so if you'd like to participate via cell phone or from somewhere other than your home, call (509) 253-8574 within about 30 minutes of the start time or any time during the program. This is another way we can stay connected to you and hear about your priorities and concerns. I hope you can join us.

Sincerely,


Joel Kretz

State Representative Joel Kretz, 7th Legislative District
RepresentativeJoelKretz.com
335A Legislative Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
joel.kretz@leg.wa.gov
360-786-7988 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000