Senate delivers on college-tuition cap, jobs and critical transportation reforms

OLYMPIA…Senate Majority Leader Mark Schoesler, R-Ritzville, offered this statement following today’s cutoff for voting on Senate bills, except for measures specifically tied to a new state operating budget:

“The Senate continues to lead the way on this session’s most important and anticipated policy initiatives. We said we would deliver on job creation, college affordability and transportation reforms and we did. We’ve moved important legislation that would benefit people in all corners of our state, especially middle-class families who are often left behind and looking for relief from energy costs and soaring tuition.

“We’ve approved legislation that would make a college education more affordable by capping tuition; supported the pursuit of clean energy in a positive way that would create high-paying jobs and reduce carbon emissions; passed critical transportation reforms that would improve Washington’s transportation infrastructure statewide while creating hundreds of thousands of good jobs; and backed changes to the state-run workers-compensation monopoly that would give workers more freedom of choice.

“Most of all we’ve listened to the needs and concerns of families and hardworking taxpayers across the state. When the Majority Coalition Caucus formed two years ago we vowed that we would work in a more collaborative way. We’re sending the message that there’s a better way to find solutions and get results for the people of Washington.

“The Senate has passed a record number of its own bills this year. A closer look shows that is simply the result of efficient governing on our majority’s part. An overwhelming majority of the bills passed by the Senate are tightly focused measures that earned solid bipartisan if not near-unanimous support – proof that they were well-crafted, with plenty of cooperation between Republicans and Democrats. That’s right in line with the new approach to governing our coalition promised to bring when the people put us in charge.”