Bob Larson Capital Budget and Hirst Fix Pt 1
by Bob Larson, click here for bio

Program: Washington State Farm Bureau Report
Date: July 24, 2017

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I’m Bob Larson. So, the third special session ends Thursday in Olympia without a Capital Budget OR the fix Republicans are looking for to the Supreme Court’s Hirst ruling that all but halts well drilling on rural lands.

That’s left plenty of disappointment in the Senate where a bill that’s passed four times and then moved on to the House, according to Senator Randi Becker, has been tabled without a vote each time …

RANDI BECKER … “There’s no reason why we can’t have a Capital Budget, period … absolutely no reason! We should be able to have a Capital Budget this year. All that needs to happen is to have the House vote on the Hirst bill. I actually asked the Governor, he asked what he could do to help and I said, ‘ask the House to vote on the Hirst bill.’ I actually do think it would pass. I do think that’s what they’re afraid of and that’s why they don’t want to have the bill to go out. The bill that we’ve passed four times that would be a permanent fix.”

Senator Judy Warnick says the protecting waters argument used by Democrats is terribly misleading …

JUDY WARNICK … “It’s a disingenuous argument that they make that a small portion of the wells, a small portion of the water that’s used in the state of Washington through permit-exempt wells, which from our studies say it’s less than 1 percent. So, less than 1 percent and 80 percent of that goes back into the ground, that argument doesn’t hold water for me.’

Democrats have offered to put a two-year delay on the Hirst decision until a better solution can be agreed to, but Republicans say that still leaves land owners in limbo with devalued property and little chance of getting a construction loan.

The Governor is contemplating a fourth special session.

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