Republicans: Governor’s Homelessness Solutions Falls Short

Gov. Jay Inslee delivered his State of the State address in Olympia Tuesday. Reaction to the speech in this report from Washington House Republicans’ John Sattgast.

SATTGAST: Although the governor recognized the serious problem of homelessness in his State of the State address, Legislative Republicans said they’re disappointed his plan would dip into the state’s Rainy-Day Fund as a temporary solution to an ongoing crisis.

Auburn Representative Drew Stokesbary is the lead Republican on the House Appropriations Committee.

STOKESBARY:  “By trying to fund his response with one-time Rainy-Day funds, he’s kicking the can down the road. So it’s very ironic that he would talk about not wanting to solve the problem by moving people down the road, when his solution is just to kick the can down the road. Even if his plan works, we’ll be right back here in 2023 trying to figure out a more sustainable path forward.”

SATTGAST: Stokesbary says a better solution is to allow local governments the authority of an ongoing revenue stream they could use to address their unique homelessness problems.

The 31st District lawmaker has drafted legislation to create a quarter-of-one-cent sales tax option for cities and counties that agree to ban heroin injection sites and unauthorized camping within 500 feet of schools, parks, playgrounds and courthouses.

Stokesbary says it’s time to give local governments the ability to respond to the underlying causes of homelessness, enforce the laws to restore safety, and finally take back their communities.  John Sattgast, Olympia.

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