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Wire Insider: Rep. Andrew Barkis

Rep. Andrew Barkis represents the 2nd Legislative District. He serves as the Ranking Member in the House Transportation Committee and is also a member of the Committees on Consumer Protection & Business, and Housing, Community Development & Veterans.

Rep. Barkis joins us as “Wire Insider” to discuss his transportation and housing related legislation this session.

As Ranking [Member] on Transportation of course the big issue is the impacts of I-976 and of the budget work that we’re going to be doing. One of the key components for us and for me is prioritization and taking a look at what the voters want us to do with the dollars we have.

The other area I work on is housing policy. I am continuing to work on a series of proposed policies and legislation to get at increasing the supply of housing and one bipartisan bill we worked on last year got pretty far involved Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU), and that will be coming back. We’ve got a new modified version to try to bring that as one more piece in the affordable housing puzzle.

There are a couple others being drafted right now that have to do with expediting the permit process, so there’s several areas we’re trying to get at to get it quicker, more efficient, and lower the cost for private development to encourage more building. With the permit process, we’ve heard time and time again that the laws that are existing now and how the process are not working as well, so we want to go back into those RCWs and see how how we might be able to modify it to get a little more teeth into getting that time frame condensed and done properly.

We also did a bill last year, HB 1923, which had a lot to do with comprehensive planning process; it was a good bipartisan bill and I think they’ll be some trailer bills behind that to see what are some next steps we can do there too.”

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