City council to vote on head tax repeal

In a surprising about-face, Seattle City Council president Bruce Harrell has introduced an ordinance — for a vote in Tuesday’s council meeting — that would repeal the head tax. The announcement was followed by a statement this afternoon from Mayor Jenny Durkan and seven councilmembers. “We heard you,” it said. “It is clear that the […]

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The budget, marijuana & cell phones top ‘telephone town hall’

State representatives Mary Lou Dickerson and Reuven Carlyle (both D-36th District) held a “telephone town hall” Tuesday evening Jan. 19 to discuss the important issues facing Olympia this legislative session. About 30,000 constituents district-wide were called to enter into the conversation, although the exact number who made it on the line is not known. Questions ranged from Dickerson’s controversial legalization of marijuana bill to broader issues including education, taxes and transportation.

The town hall worked as a sort of large conference call. Everyone on the call could hear the questions and answers, and if so inclined, could enter into a queue to ask questions themselves.

While the focus of most questions was the economy, Dickerson’s bill (HB 2401) to legalize marijuana for those who are 21 and older may prove to be the most contentious issue facing the Legislature. On Wednesday, Jan. 20th, an executive session was scheduled, but no action was taken in the House Committee on Public Safety & Emergency Preparedness. The importance of this bill to Dickerson was expressed clearly in her opening remarks.

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Telephone townhall tonight

Just a reminder that your phone might ring tonight just before 6:30 this evening. State Reps. Mary Lou Dickerson and Reuven Carlyle will be hosting a telephone-town hall. Nearly 30,000 homes in the district will be called, inviting residents to stay on the line and participate. Carlyle and Dickerson will be giving opening thoughts, while […]

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Legislators to hold phone-in town hall

As the 2010 Legislative Session begins, state Reps. Mary Lou Dickerson and Reuven Carlyle want to hear from you! The two Seattle lawmakers are holding a telephone-town hall next Tuesday, January 19 at 6:30 p.m. Nearly 30,000 homes in the district will be called, inviting residents to stay on the line and participate. Carlyle and […]

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Carlyle reaching out before legislative session

Representative Reuven Carlyle is entering his second year as a 36th District Representative to the state legislature. Before the session starts next week, Carlyle is reaching out to find out what’s important to you and give you an idea of what he’s planning for the session.

The following is written by Rep. Carlyle:

The bang of the gavel opens the 2010 session of the Legislature on January 11, and the depth of the challenges we face in the 60-day sprint reflect the seriousness that people are feeling in their daily lives.

Before I put my life as a husband, father and entrepreneur on hold to serve in Olympia as your citizen legislator, I wanted to reach out and connect about the pressing issues facing our state as we enter the legislative session.

What are the policy issues that inspire you to act, and what can state government do to be more responsive to your values and interests? Please make suggestions in the thread, spend some time on my active blog at or email me anytime at Friend me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter where I’m working to keep you informed from inside your government. My goal is to be the first ‘paperless’ legislative office.

This year, given the difficult economic times in which we live, there is little besides the budget on the table. But how we handle the budget is a moral question not just a financial one. The state’s $32 billion two-year budget (driven by consumer-purchasing related taxes) is staggering under the weight of the economic downturn. This year’s projected $2.6 billion budget deficit–following a projected $9 billion gap last year that we balanced–has forced the most substantive reassessment of our public priorities in generations.

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