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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We're now in day 17 of the scheduled 105-day session in Olympia. Much of our time right now is spent in committees and meeting with various groups and constituents.

I'm pleased to report that of the 16 bills I have introduced, four have had public hearings, one is scheduled to be heard tomorrow (House Bill 1159 concerning teen driving safety), and another measure, House Bill 1157 regarding quick title service fees, has passed out of committee.

Last week in my e-newsletter, I provided the first list of six bills I had introduced, along with their descriptions and status. Go here to read more about those bills.

Rep. Liz PikeI have received numerous emails and phone calls from constituents wondering why some of these important reform bills never get hearings. The challenge is convincing the chair of the committee where the bill has been sent to give it a fair hearing. The chair has the sole discretion on which bills receive a hearing. The party in the majority gets to control the committee chair position. In the House, Democrats are in the majority and the committee chairs are Democrats. It's my job to build relationships with those powerful committee chairs and then “sell” my bill concept to them. I do my very best and sometimes it works.

This week, I have a new list of prime-sponsored bills that have been introduced and referred to their respective committees. I encourage you to share this information with your neighbors and have them sign up for my weekly e-newsletter update from my website at www.representativelizpike.com.

Thank you for the honor of allowing me to serve and represent you! Please contact my office any time you have a question about the bills listed, other legislation, or if you need assistance with a state agency. You'll find the contact information at the bottom of this e-mail update.

Rep. Liz Pike with Washington State Dairy Ambassadors

MY BILLS – THE SECOND LIST
(See first list here.)

This second batch of bills is aimed at improving Washington's business climate and streamline government operations. This legislation includes:

Centralized management of real estate assets – House Bill 1452

Description: This measure would save money by creating a centralized administrative office to manage many of the state's significant real estate assets. Most every state agency has its own real estate division with designated staff attorneys etc. Under my bill, this would become centralized, allowing for the reduction of all of these redundant positions sprinkled throughout every state agency. This bill comes at the request of a Clark County citizen in my district who is a retired state worker from the Dept. of Fish and Wildlife. Over his career, he had a bird's eye view of state government. I met with him this past summer to hear his many ideas about state government reforms.

Status: Referred to the General Government and Information Technology Committee.

Columbia Gorge

Improving economic development in Columbia River Gorge – House Bill 1453

Description: This pro-jobs bill would eliminate the backlog of land-use applications submitted to the Columbia River Gorge Commission and promote regional economic development. Since I am a fiscal conservative, I placed a high level of accountability within the pages of this bill, which would appropriate funding for the addition of temporary planning staff to speed action on land-use applications within the gorge boundaries. The measure would also update a comprehensive land-use plan from 1999.

I began working on this bill last summer after participating in a Gorge Consortium tour along with several other Oregon and Washington legislators. This bill is all about jobs and unleashing the next generation of innovation in our state's aviation industry. Just as we have been a worldwide leader in fixed wing aircraft, we can also lead in the emerging unmanned aerial vehicle industry with its birthplace right here in our own Columbia River Gorge community.

Status: Referred to the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee.

Limiting benefits from drug- and alcohol-related injuries in the workplace – House Bill 1454

Description: When citizens under the influence of drugs or alcohol while operating a vehicle are convicted, Washington judges hand down sentences with heavy fines and jail time. Yet when this same behavior happens in the workplace (which endangers lives of co-workers), offending parties are rewarded with generous time-loss benefits.

This bill would direct those injured on the job as a result of intoxication from drugs or alcohol to forfeit rights to time-loss benefits; medical benefits would still be granted. This measure comes at the request of several CEOs from key manufacturing companies in Clark County that I have visited with.

Status: Referred to the Labor Committee.

Rep. Liz Pike addresses March for Life Rally


Prevailing wage reforms – House Bills 1455 and 1456

Description – House Bill 1455: This measure would allow cities and counties by majority vote of their elected body to pass an ordinance allowing their jurisdiction to opt out of prevailing wage requirements on all projects valued at less than $5 million.
This bill will significantly reduce the cost of construction on smaller municipal projects by cities and counties. I introduced this bill last year and will continue to work on this important local government issue until we can get some relief. On average, prevailing wage requirements add as much as 30 percent to the construction cost of new public libraries, community centers, fire stations and police stations. City officials from Camas and Battle Ground traveled to Olympia last year to testify in support of this legislation.
Status: Referred to the Labor Committee.

Description – House Bill 1456: This measure would create a fair, competitive business environment through prevailing wage reforms. Inconsistent prevailing wages set by the state Department of Labor and Industries have created disadvantages in certain areas of the state. For example, metal fabricators in King County may pay their workers a prevailing wage $15.86 per hour. However, Clark County metal fabricators are forced to bid those same jobs at a set prevailing wage of $28.95 an hour, making it virtually impossible for our Clark County manufacturers to secure that work. This bill specifies that “site of work” is the same as federal law, meaning site of work is the physical place where the building or work called for in the contract will remain.

Status: Referred to the Labor Committee.

 

 

Sincerely,


Liz Pike
"Protecting life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness!"

State Representative Liz Pike, 18th Legislative District
RepresentativeLizPike.com
469 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
liz.pike@leg.wa.gov
360-786-7812 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000