21st District legislators’ Town Hall meeting comes to Meadowdale

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Sen. Marko Liias and Rep. Lillian Ortiz-Self look on as Rep. Strom Peterson (D-Edmonds) answers a constituent's question. Now vice-chair of the House Environment Committee, Peterson is concentrating his efforts regulating oil train safety, ensuring accountability and making sure polluters pay for clean-up, and reducing our carbon footprint. (Photos by Larry Vogel)
Sen. Marko Liias and Rep. Lillian Ortiz-Self look on as Rep. Strom Peterson answers a constituent’s question. Now vice-chair of the House Environment Committee, Peterson is concentrating his efforts regulating oil train safety, ensuring accountability and making sure polluters pay for clean-up, and reducing our carbon footprint. (Photos by Larry Vogel)

Legislators from the 21st District, covering parts of Edmonds and Lynnwood as well as Mukilteo, met with more than 100 constituents at a Town Hall meeting Saturday morning at Meadowdale High School. Sen. Marko Liias and Rep. Lillian Ortiz-Self, both Mukilteo Democrats, and Strom Peterson, a newly elected Democrat from Edmonds, provided an update of current legislative activity and fielded questions from the audience ranging from education to the environment to transportation and more.

The delegation made a strong point of how they work as a team in Olympia, with each member concentrating on a particular area of interest and expertise, and then sharing information and supporting each others efforts. Liias has chosen transportation as his main focus, while Ortiz-Self has taken on education and Peterson the environment.

Sen. Marko Liias lines out the high points of the recently-passed Senate transportation package.  The package is now in the House for consideration.
Sen. Marko Liias hits the high points of the recently-passed Senate transportation package. The package is now in the House for consideration.
Freshman Rep. Strom Peterson underscored his commitment to the environment with strong statements about the need to regulate oil train traffic, make polluters pay for cleanup, and reduce our carbon emissions.  "Recent oil train derailments and fires have shown the critical need for effective oversight," he said.  "Think of an oil spill in the Edmonds Marsh or a derailment and fire next to the Senior Center.  These would be disasters of huge proportions.  We are working on a bill in the House right now (HB 1449) to move us forward in reducing the chance of these things happening here."
“Recent oil train derailments and fires have shown the critical need for effective oversight,” Peterson said. “Think of an oil spill in the Edmonds Marsh or a derailment and fire next to the Senior Center. These would be disasters of huge proportions. We are working on a bill in the House right now (HB 1449) to move us forward in reducing the chance of these things happening here.”
Rep. Lillian Ortiz-Self has dedicated her life to education, and this passion continues in the state legislature. She stresses the importance of a "cradle to career" approach, that includes raises for teachers and re-evaluating testing as a graduation requirement. "Students need more education, not more testing," she said.
Rep. Lillian Ortiz-Self has dedicated her life to education, and this passion continues in the state legislature. She stresses the importance of a “cradle to career” approach, that includes raises for teachers and re-evaluating testing as a graduation requirement. “Students need more education, not more testing,” she said.
Rose Cantwell from the Edmonds Senior Center wanted to know about provisions in the state budget to help with projects like the planned construction of a new senior center.
Rose Cantwell from the Edmonds Senior Center wanted to know about provisions in the state budget to help with projects like the planned construction of a new senior center.
Mike Shaw stressed the importance of removing coal from our energy mix by closing coal-burning power plants, especially the Centralia coal plant in Washington State.
Mike Shaw stressed the importance of removing coal from our energy mix by closing coal-burning power plants, especially the Centralia coal plant in Washington State.
Edmonds Community College president Jean Hernandez stressed the importance of continuing and enhancing funding and other support for post-secondary education as a critical piece of the delegation's "cradle to career" approach.
Edmonds Community College president Jean Hernandez stressed the importance of continuing and enhancing funding and other support for post-secondary education as a critical piece of the delegation’s “cradle to career” approach.

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