I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that there is no lack of information vying for your attention. Do you ever yearn for the days before internet and mobile phones? I try to be selective with the information that I send to you, knowing that your time has value. It is my intention to inform you of events, legislation or issues that may interest you — I do not want to overwhelm you. Many times, I send out press releases on county actions that are pertinent to the county as a whole. Other times, such as now, my intent is to inform on different matters, such as this: American Rescue Plan Act 2021: Summary.
Pierce County Conservation District
You may have noticed on your property tax bill a charge for up to $10 for the Pierce County Conservation District. They work with farmers/landowners to assist them in caring for their land. The formation of these districts dates back to the 1920s. For a bit of history, click here. They provide valuable services. Recently, I received a ballot in the mail for the election of a board member. You must request a ballot to get on the ballot mailing list. I was surprised to learn that less than 1,100 ballots were mailed for the current election. One board member is elected, and one is appointed. Perhaps you may be interested in applying for that? Please check out their website and sign up for a ballot for their next election and check out their services.
COVID vaccine information
Recently, I received a call from a constituent seeking information about where to get a COVID-19 vaccine. Here is a link from the state that provides site information by zip code for those wanting a shot.
Next week, your County Council will be voting on its mandated sustainability plan. State law requires a plan to be in place that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% by 2030 to qualify for grants for projects, such as transportation. The ordinance, 2021-8s2, is before Council for adoption of the 2030 greenhouse gas update, replacing the county’s expired 2020 plan. The plan outlines recommended policies for the council to act on to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. I don’t know what Pierce County’s share of the state’s greenhouse emissions are, but in 2017, the state’s share of global greenhouse gas emissions was 0.27 %. Below is a chart of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions shared on the Department of Ecology’s website:
Washington Total Annual Greenhouse Gas Emissions
2008 = 99.02 million metric tons
2010 = 96.38 million metric tons
2012 = 91.8 million metric tons
2014 = 92.97 million metric tons
2016 = 97.86 million metric tons
2018 = 99.57 million metric tons (up 1.3% from 2017)
I anticipate many views, feelings, and findings to be presented at the scheduled final adoption hearing Tuesday (3/23) at the 3 p.m. council meeting. (Please note that links to information are for informational purposes, not an endorsement.)
"Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."
You can view the Council’s meeting calendar here. If you wish to comment on the legislation, there is a window on the ordinance webpage where you can click and share your position, pro or con, and leave a message if you choose.
State Legislative update
Speaking of legislation, our state legislature is very busy this session. While there are hundreds of pieces of legislation, I try to inform you of ones that will affect you and the county in personal or financial ways, or on issues that some of you have told me are important. Here are four pieces you may want to review:
HB 1076 Allowing whistleblowers to bring actions on behalf of the state for violations of workplace protections (authorizes a qui tam action—an abbreviation of the Latin phrase meaning… “(he) who sues in this matter for the king as well as for himself…).
HB 1362 Modifying the annual regular property tax revenue growth limit.
SB 5052 Creating Health Equity Zones.
SB 5096 Concerning an excise tax on the sale or exchange of certain capital assets.
I recommend emailing your state legislators with your position and testifying in a virtual hearing on legislation important to you. There are three ways you can testify: live, through written comment or by simply registering your position noted for the record. See the state Legislature website for detailed instructions on how to do this.
Thank you for your time and attention.
Grateful for you!