Rep. Shelly Short, R-Addy, issued the following statement today in response to an announcement of a public hearing next week on Gov. Christine Gregoire’s cap and trade proposal:
"The nation, the state and the Pacific Northwest region continue to lose jobs at a record pace. With the current economic crisis, every decision we as elected officials make in Olympia should be guided by one thing: does this help families and jobs, or does this hurt families and jobs?
"The way I see it, this is not the time to be adding punitive and costly environmental policies on our employers. Our state accounts for only three-tenths of one percent of global greenhouse gasses. We shouldn’t be risking our state economy and jobs for an unproven regulation policy that burdens businesses and discourages out-of-state companies from bringing their jobs here.
"I have serious concerns that a state-sponsored cap and trade proposal would end up spending our limited state resources, cost businesses money they don’t have, and cost our state and region jobs we can’t afford to lose.
"Why are we not letting the new administration lead on this issue? President Obama and the federal government have said they want to make a change and instill new environmental regulations. Why aren’t we letting them do their job? Where is the urgency to have a regional cap and trade program if the federal government is going to enact a national one? It makes no sense.
"Anytime there is a ‘fast-track’ on legislation, the public should take notice. Especially when that legislation deals with so many unknown costs and has the potential to eliminate more jobs in our manufacturing and energy production industries."
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