Washington state will ring in the new year under a longer COVID shutdown. On Wednesday, Gov. Jay Inslee extended statewide restrictions by another week. Legislative Republican leaders worry it’s another nail in the coffin of small businesses barely alive. Washington House Republicans’ John Sattgast reports.
SATTGAST: For the past six weeks, indoor dining at restaurants and bars has been prohibited. Theaters have been closed, along with gymnasiums and fitness centers. They were expected to re-open in mid-December, but the governor has repeatedly extended the ban. Now Inslee says they can’t open until January 11th, the first day of the 2021 legislative session.
House Republican Leader Representative J.T. Wilcox says it could strike the final blow to small businesses hanging on by a thread.
WILCOX: “I’m disappointed in the governor’s decision. State government continues to focus on how it can shut employers down instead of how it can help them survive. These extended statewide restrictions will take us up to the beginning of the legislative session. That day can’t come soon enough.”
SATTGAST: Wilcox says legislative Republicans are prepared to begin the 2021 session with needed comprehensive relief and a recovery plan to help Washingtonians struggling from the governor’s shutdown.
WILCOX: “Republicans will have solutions ready to help small businesses and the people who rely on them. We hope our Democratic colleagues share our sense of urgency and understand immediate action needs to be taken.”
SATTGAST: John Sattgast, the state Capitol.