Dear Friends and Neighbors,
I'd like to begin by thanking everyone in the 19th District for the incredible sacrifices you've made because of the coronavirus outbreak. Few of us have experienced anything close to this full-scale societal shutdown. It's a bit of an understatement to say that our lives have changed in unprecedented ways.
Early responses by national and state government leaders protected public health by spacing out the timing of cases, enabling hospitals and first responders to stay ahead of the virus. The goals were simple: stem the contagion, find treatment, and get people back to work as quickly as possible. Although we've made progress on the first two of those goals, it's time now to look at the third—going back to work.
More than 230,000 small businesses across our state have been shut down by order of the governor. Thousands of Washingtonians have taken a pay cut or lost a job. No matter how well prepared some households may have been for a situation of this scope, the loss of employment and income comes as a shock. Those unable to work remotely or in a business allowed to stay open continue to suffer.
While the governor may not classify many of these businesses as essential, their value—including the families they support and economic activity they generate—make them crucial to our economy. Despite these realities, our state's executive branch has yet to offer a coherent, detailed, and evidenced-based path forward to reopening our state for business. Few, if any, specifics have been given on how industries and other activities can safely resume.
Here's the undeniable truth: we must begin to transition our state out of reactionary choices and into recovery. Along with several of my House and Senate colleagues, I helped develop a plan for the safe restart of Washington's economy. Additionally, I co-authored a supplemental proposal that augments that plan by implementing a short-term, statewide dual moratorium on B&O taxes and impact statements, including permits and fees.
Telephone Town Hall
Please consider joining me in discussing the state's economic recovery plans, and other legislative topics during my upcoming telephone town hall on Monday, May 4, from 4 to 5 p.m. During the hourlong call, I'll answer your questions and hear your thoughts and concerns on how our state can begin to move forward.
19th District residents with landlines will receive an invitation phone call to take part in the town hall just before the meeting begins. If you do not receive a call and wish to participate, you may dial (360) 209-6593, press * (star key) to ask a question.
- What: 19th District Telephone Town Hall with Rep. Jim Walsh
- When: Monday, May 4, from 4 to 5 p.m.
- How to participate: Call (360) 209-6593, press * (star key) to ask a question.
If you have questions about how to participate, please contact my office at (360) 786-7806.
I look forward to talking with you.