January 15, 2018
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It's time! AWB's annual Legislative Day and Hill Climb begins Tuesday morning

Hundreds of employers and community leaders will gather in Olympia tomorrow for AWB's annual Legislative Day and Hill Climb. Attendees will hear from issue experts on employment law, education, climate, manufacturing and much more. Onling registration is closed, but walk-in registrations will be available as space allows for the conference at the Hotel RL in Olympia, but not for the Hill Climb.

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State of the State: Inslee calls for carbon tax, speed-up of school funding

Gov. Jay Inslee opened the 60-day legislative session last week with a big-picture call for a carbon tax, an accelerated pace of education funding through a nearly $1 billion withdrawal from state's rainy-day fund, and a suite of other policy proposals.

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Governor's carbon tax bill to have hearing in Senate on Tuesday

AWB and member companies will testify Tuesday morning about the impacts of Senate Bill 6203, which would place a tax on carbon. The bill would increase the cost of energy and transportation,, according to figures from the governor's office.

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Agreement on Hirst fix appears; full floor vote reportedly could come

A bipartisan breakthrough on the Hirst water rights issue could be in the works after a Senate subcommittee unanimously passed a bill last week. This AWB priority issue could come up for a full Senate vote as soon as this week.

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Bill to reinstate manufacturer B&O tax reduction introduced

Rep. Brandon Vick, R-Felida, introduced House Bill 2293 last week in an effort to reinstate the manufacturing tax break Gov. Jay Inslee vetoed last summer. The bill starts the conversation on ways to support the manufacturing sector in rural Washington.

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Fix Hirst, Support Manufacturers

Support rural Washington

By The Wenatchee World Editorial Board

The Puget Sound region's economy is booming. But across the state, the post-recession economic recovery has been uneven. Much of rural Washington is still struggling, with higher rates of unemployment and comparatively modest economic gains.

Fixing Hirst and delivering tax relief to manufacturers will help expand our state's prosperity to rural counties.

Read the full editorial in The Wenatchee World
Costly and Unnecessary

No sense in carbon tax

By The (Longview) Daily News Editorial Board

Gov. Inslee is urging legislators to pass a $20 per ton carbon tax during the current legislative session. We urge you to call your local legislators and tell them to vote "no" on carbon tax legislation.

If passed, money raised from a carbon tax reportedly would fund schools; provide incentives for renewable energy, such as solar energy; be applied to research for new clean technologies; manage storm water runoff; help prevent forest fires; and more.

While all of these issues are worthwhile, the effects of a carbon tax on citizens and businesses far outweighs the benefits, which is why we don't support the tax.

The governor's staff indicated a carbon tax likely will increase power rates 4 percent to 5 percent for electricity, 9 percent to 11 percent for natural gas and 6 percent to 9 percent for gasoline.

If a carbon tax law is passed, utilities such as the Cowlitz PUD, will be negatively impacted and we believe the power rate increases would be pushed much higher than the governor's staff estimates. Citizens and businesses can't afford those types of increases...

Read the full editorial in The Daily News
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