July 13, 2015
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
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Contact Gov. Inslee, urge him to resist EPA pressure and move forward with Washington water quality rule

After years of consideration and input from all sides, Gov. Jay Inslee and the Washington Department of Ecology have developed a new rule to establish stricter water quality standards that successfully balance the needs of our environment and our economy.

Surprisingly, the regional office of the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is saying these new tough standards aren't tough enough. The EPA wants to force Washington to adopt standards to rigid they can't be achieved even with the best technologies.

Newspaper editorial boards across the state, from The Herald in Everett and The Spokesman-Review to The Tri-City Herald and the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin are urging Washington and the governor to stand up for our state's new, stricter but achievable standards.

Last week Dr. Bruce Hope, a longtime Oregon Department of Environmental Quality environmental toxicologist, examined the issue in The Seattle Times. His conclusion: "Developing the right approach to water-quality protection for Washington will thus require various interests continuing to work together to find common ground. Washington’s rules for protecting our waters need to be established by the people elected by Washington voters. The EPA’s Region 10 office should simply not be threatening to circumvent or supersede the standard-setting authority granted to the state under the Clean Water Act."

Add your voice to theirs. Contact Gov. Inslee today and urge him to finalize his draft rule to protect Washington waters and Washington jobs.

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Export-Import Bank helps employers compete globally

By U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) and Kris Johnson

With the creation of the U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank over 80 years ago, many Washington state businesses -- both large and small -- have remarkable success stories to tell about growing their businesses because of exports.

These stories can be found throughout the Washington state in a variety of industries. Take for example, Seattle's Lighthouse for the Blind, a manufacturer of machine parts and molding for aerospace companies. Because of its robust export business supported by the bank, it is able provide more than 400 good-paying jobs for Washingtonians in the deaf-blind community. ...

Congress must act to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank charter. The consequences of doing nothing would be devastating to employers and employees in Washington state and around the nation.

Click here to read the full op-ed in The Hill

Our Voice: Lawmakers make right choice supporting gas tax

By the editorial board of the Tri-City Herald

Voting in favor of a significant tax hike is not easy for lawmakers from conservative legislative districts.

So the Mid-Columbia legislators who approved an 11.9-cent gas tax increase should be commended for having the courage to make the right decision. ...

Tax hikes are tough to take, but at least in this case the Tri-City area will get some benefit from the new revenue.

And that is thanks to several Mid-Columbia lawmakers who made the right, but tough, choice...

Click here to read the full editorial in The Tri-City Herald
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