$4.5 billion in new tax increases

2019 legislative session • April 19, 2019 

The Current -- 2017 legislative session

Dear Friend:  

Tragic news fell over the Capitol Monday with the death of Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Deputy Justin DeRosier on Saturday night. He was shot and killed while on duty.

The loss of Deputy DeRosier is a painful reminder that the men and women of our law enforcement community put their lives on the line every day to protect us. And some make the ultimate sacrifice.

Our condolences and prayers go out to his wife, daughter and law enforcement family. As his community mourns, we must support it.

Rep. Ed Orcutt, who lives in Kalama, asked for a point of personal privilege on the House floor Monday to honor Deputy DeRosier. It was an emotional moment for everyone.

Nine days left

Only nine days remain in the legislative session. While many bills will be considered next week, the most important pieces of unfinished business are the state operating, capital and transportation budgets. All three state spending plans need to be reconciled between the House and Senate.

The biggest hurdle for Democrats on the operating budget has been agreeing on spending levels. From there, they will have to decide how to generate more revenue beyond regular state tax collections. In others words: which taxes do they want to raise and by how much?

House Finance Committee today

Democrats on the House Finance Committee offered some clues earlier today by passing three bills that would increase taxes by $4.5 billion over the next four years -- including a new capital gains income tax. Every House Republican resisted and voted "no." You can learn more below and watch my video update from earlier today on this topic.  


While there have been several partisan battles, and more to come, it's important to acknowledge our bipartisan accomplishments this year. And there have been many. 

  • Senate Bill 5380 will establish new rules regarding opioid prescribing, the dispensing of opioid overdose reversal medication, and require physicians to discuss alternatives to opioids with patients before prescribing. House Republicans were able to adopt an important amendment to the bill that would prohibit the Health Care Authority from partnering with any agency that supervises the injection of illicit drugs. The Democratic chair of the House Health Care and Wellness Committee said she hopes this amendment is stripped out of the final bill. Both the bill and amendment passed with strong, bipartisan support, and we want this version to make it to the governor's desk.
  • House Bill 1713, sponsored by Rep. Gina Mosbrucker, will take a major step toward advancing the investigations and discovery of missing and murdered Native American women. Gina has worked hard on this issue for a long time. This video shares the story of this issue and legislation. I encourage you to watch it.  
  • Senate Bill 5511 will expand broadband service to enable economic development, public safety and health care across our state. While this was governor-request legislation and sponsored by a Democrat, everyone knows Rep. Mary Dye has been the leader on this issue in the Legislature.  

Remembering Hunter Goodman

In closing, our caucus and the Washington State Legislature lost a good friend this week: Hunter Goodman. Hunter served as the Secretary of the Senate from 2013 to 2017, and worked for the Office of the Attorney General. Hunter’s wife, Sarah, and their son, Grayson, are in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.  


Rep. J.T. Wilcox
House Republican Leader
(360) 786-7912

House Democrats advance $4.5 billion in new tax increases

In the House Finance Committee today, Democrats voted out House Bills 2156, 2157 and 2158. The measures, collectively, would:

Rep. Ed Orcutt, ranking Republican on the House Finance Committee, said in a statement: “The Democrats do not need to raise taxes on anyone. The Legislature has more than enough money to pay for the state’s priorities. Republicans are united on this issue and our votes in the House Finance Committee today reflect this position.” Read his full statement here.

Rep. Drew Stokesbary, who also sits on the committee, released this video explaining why taxes do not need to be raised. 

Rep. Dan Griffey

The media has done a great job of covering the five-year effort of Rep. Dan Griffey (pictured above) and other important advocates to modify the statute of limitations for most sex crimes. A bill was signed into law earlier today. Learn more: Griffey commends signing of bill ending, extending statute of limitations for ‘heinous’ sex crimes

House Republican bills

Maycumber bill to assist local veterans passes Legislature, heads to governor’s desk

Governor signs Graham bill to protect privacy of those seeking help for PTSD

Chambers bill to cut costs for local governments signed into law

Mosbrucker’s latest bill on missing and murdered Native people awaits governor’s signature (Yakima Herald)

Senate unanimously approves Mosbrucker’s domestic violence brain injury bill, sends it to governor

Four Caldier bills pass Senate; Three heading to governor for signature

Governor signs Rep. Goehner legislation related to foreclosure proceedings

Senate approves Dufault’s Astria Toppenish hospital bill, purple heart license plates measure; sends bills to governor

Senate approves Ybarra’s bill allowing colleges more flexibility in admitting education students, sends it to the governor

Senate unanimously approves Jenkin bill supporting safer emergency and work zones

Volz bill allowing counties to contract with each other signed into law

Rep. Paul Harris’ Tobacco 21 legislation signed into law

Bill allowing Centralia access to Greenwood Memorial Park appears headed to governor’s desk (The Chronicle)

Other bills of interest

While no bill is truly dead until the gavel drops on the last day of the legislative session, for now these measures appear to be dead in the House. 

Senate Bill 5376 would protect consumer data. Passed the Senate 46-1, died in the House.

Senate Bill 5489 would create a definition of environmental justice, direct agencies to address environmental health disparities and create a task force. Passed the Senate 27-21, died in the House. 

Senate Bill 5077 would prohibit single-use plastic straws. Passed the Senate 27-21, died in the House. 

Senate Bill 5323 would restrict the provision of single-use plastic carryout bags by retail establishments. Passed the Senate 31-14, died in the House. 

Our social media

Get involved

Connect with us

Learn more

Washington State House Republicans