Support The Wire

Washington State Wire is Back

Plenty of Unfinished Business at the Capitol - New Original Content on the Way

It’s been a quiet month on the website, however offline we’ve been hard at work outlining the issues for the interim and recruiting new contributors to tell the story.

Five years is a long time to survive in the new digital world of publishing. What we know, or what we have learned, is you adapt or die. Going forward we will continue to present content from a core team of lead reporters and place greater emphasis on soliciting featured contributions from around the state. There is plenty of unfinished business at the Capitol and we are building the team to cover it. Here is the landscape as we see it:

The Supreme Court is flirting with separation of power issues at every session as it attempts to force the legislature’s hand to boost K-12 education spending. It’s a crisis only government could manufacture. It’s all about more money. But, what about results?

The Governor’s most recent Executive Order on climate “action” is the latest in a troubling trend of leading by dictates. Such orders do not enjoy the same social respect of a deliberative body. However, in all fairness, the Legislature better start deliberating and producing product.

One example of inaction is in transportation. Bridges are collapsing, Bertha is broken, and King County transit propositions are failing. Seattle is, again, as always, ready to go it alone. It’s anyone’s guess how many more listening tours, studies, and special sessions it will take the Legislature to pass a transportation package.

Largely due to its complexity a nuanced environmental battle wages in the background of public consciousness. It can be a challenge to explain how the esoteric determination of how much fish people eat each week has very real societal impacts. On the topic of carbon emissions, the desire for a righteous display of national environmental “leadership,” amplifies cries for a carbon trading scheme or tax. It’s easy to forget that zero-carbon emitting hydro power dominates our grid.

Meanwhile, the three time elected statewide Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler is pursuing a curious course on healthcare reform. Like most observers in this state, we will continue to attempt to interpret his actions.

Lest we forget, we are staring into the barrel of the mid-term elections. It’s already been full of twists and turns including Senator Tom’s retirement and Mark Miloscia emerging as the surprise savior to the MCC. Add to that a dollop of initiatives and referendums, and the fun is just beginning.

There is no doubt that the Wire is entering a new chapter. In many ways the conversations we are having are similar to those we had when we first began. It’s rewarding to reflect on why we started this, and where we want to take it. Our passion for this effort is still strong. If you are mighty with a pen, please consider contributing a written piece. If you prefer the sword, please support the Washington State Wire as a subscriber or advertiser. As we like to say here at the Wire, “It doesn’t cost any more to tell the truth.”

Your support matters.

Public service journalism is important today as ever. If you get something from our coverage, please consider making a donation to support our work. Thanks for reading our stuff.