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Report from Olympia |  Aug. 27, 2019

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

It’s amazing how quickly the summer flew by. Back-to-school preparations are in full swing, vacations are wrapping up and the Labor Day weekend is days away. I hope you and your family have had a great summer and are ready for a busy and fun autumn.

I also want you to be prepared for something else – the 2020 Census. You may have already started receiving mailers from the U.S. Census Bureau, or noticed television, radio and newspaper stories about how crucial the census is to our community. You can view my public service announcement video below.

The census is mandated by Article I, Section II of the Constitution and takes place every ten years. Participating is not only a part of our civic duty, but it is also in the interest of our community. Information from the census is used to determine the boundaries of our state and Congressional districts, as well as which communities, schools, hospitals and roads will receive federal funding. In other words, how much of OUR tax dollars come back to OUR community... and how much stays in the other Washington.

In addition to learning more about the 2020 Census in this issue of Report from Olympia, you can read my latest perspective on the continuing management failures of Governor Inslee regarding the Department of Corrections. This was published as a guest column in the Everett Herald. You can also find out about a recent honor your Fourth Legislative District team received; and much more.

Thank you for the honor and privilege of representing you in the Washington State Senate.


Senator Mike Padden

VIDEO: Do your part to make sure everyone is counted

Census PSA

Click here to watch Sen. Padden’s message on the 2020 U.S. Census.

Washington State Senator Mike Padden, R-Spokane Valley, encourages all Washingtonians to do their part to make sure everyone is counted in the 2020 U.S. Census. For more information visit

Commentary: Years after scandal, corrections reforms idled

Gov. Inslee has stood in the way of necessary reforms for the Department of Corrections.


AP Photo

By Sen. Padden in The Everett Herald | August 25, 2019

How many scandals will it take before Gov. Jay Inslee’s administration finally acknowledges the need for reform at the state Department of Corrections?

Three prisoners died at the Monroe Correctional Center as a result of medical care that investigators have described as shockingly negligent. Other inmate deaths are under review. Last month we learned the medical director was fired for misconduct, but we can’t lay all the blame at her feet. This physician didn’t meet the minimum requirements for the position, and Corrections hired her anyway.

I hope this case will cause Inslee to concede at long last that the problems with this troubled agency start at the top, with his appointees and inadequate supervision from his office. Better yet, I hope this case will prompt lawmakers to pass reform legislation setting the agency straight.

…We had bipartisan support for a Senate corrections reform bill in 2017, putting new structures in place at Corrections to head off future fiascos. The governor’s office quashed it in the House during the final hours of that legislative session.

… The governor is right to be embarrassed by the state of Department of Corrections management, but he is wrong to stand in the way of meaningful reform.

To read the full article, click here.

Retail association gives 4th District legislators ‘perfect’ voting records

Martha Miller with Sen. Padden

Sen. Mike Padden meeting with Martha Miller, senior advocacy manager for governmental affairs for Target Stores. Miller was in Olympia to support passage of SB 5635, Padden’s 2017 retail theft bill.

The Washington Retail Association has recognized your Fourth Legislative District Team for our strong support of retailers across the state. The association said that we each earned a 100-percent voting record on issues important to retailers throughout the 2019 legislative session.

It’s an honor to be recognized for our efforts to support our state’s retailers, their workers and consumers. In the 2019 legislative session the Democrats had complete control over state government, and forced through 16 new tax laws, many of which represent an assault on our state’s retailers, hurt consumers and pose a risk to our state’s economy.

One of the most egregious of these new tax changes is the elimination of the tax incentive for some out-of-state shoppers to spend money in border counties.

Click here to read the press release on this topic.


Alaska Airlines announces new service between Paine Field and Spokane

Alaska Airlines

An Alaska Airlines Embraer 175 lands at Paine Field in Everett. (Jennifer Schuld /

Alaska Airlines recently announced that it will launch daily nonstop service between Spokane International Airport and Paine Field-Snohomish County Airport in Everett on Nov. 4. Spokane will become the 10th destination served from Everett's Paine Field.

"When it comes to flights at Paine Field, our guests have been eager for one city to be added above all others right now – they said make it Spokane," said David Besse, Alaska Airlines’ manager of network planning. "We believe this route will be very popular, easily connecting family and friends, workers and businesses, between two dynamic regions of the state."

Larry Krauter, CEO of Spokane International Airport added, "This new service to Paine Field will directly benefit the aerospace industry sector as it continues to expand in our region and create time-saving efficiencies for our business community overall. We're thankful to Alaska for its commitment to the Spokane and Coeur d'Alene region!"

Alaska started commercial service at Paine Field on March 4. In that short time, flying in and out of Everett has become a popular, convenient option for many travelers, especially those who live north of Seattle who don't want to drive to Sea-Tac Airport.

Click here to read news coverage.


In the News:

HUD Secretary Ben Carson: 'Spokane is helping to forge a pathway’

Ben Carson

Click here to watch video: Secretary Carson toured Spokane's EnVision Center, which serves as a place for nonprofits to offer services to vulnerable populations in a central location.

KREM2 | Aug. 14, 2019

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson visited Spokane on Tuesday to tour the city's EnVision Center alongside of Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA).

Carson also participated in a roundtable discussion at the center ahead of the tour.

The center, which serves as a place for nonprofits to offer services to vulnerable populations in a central location, held its grand opening in April. It is located at 130 South Arthur Street.

… While speaking with media, Carson called Spokane's center "outstanding" and added that he thinks it will serve as a best practices model for others.

"This is a wonderful endeavor here that has shown what can happen when a lot of people come together, work together for the good of the community," Carson said.

"I think Spokane is helping to forge a pathway for a lot of other areas across the country," he added later.

Sen. Mike Padden 408 N. Mullan Rd., Ste. 106 ● Spokane Valley, WA 99206