Publisher’s note: We submitted questions to all local Washington State House of Representative candidates whose names will appear on the Aug. 2, 2016 primary election ballot. Here is the response received from one of those vying for the Position 1 in the 21st Legislative District, which includes parts of Edmonds and Lynnwood. To find your legislative district, click here.
Strom Peterson, incumbent, Democrat
Q: If re-elected, what is your top priority?
While we have absolutely need to fully fund public education and pass substantive legislation to protect our environment, my top priority is tackling the opioid and heroin epidemic that is tearing apart families and communities. I am working on a number of pieces of legislation to try and keep people from becoming addicted, treat those that are, and provide life-saving medication for the all-too-often overdose situation. Working with law enforcement, public health officials, and the medical community, I hope Washington can be a leader in addressing this epidemic.
Q: What motivated you to run for this position? What do you want to see change?
There are great opportunities to pass quality legislation at the state level. As we watch politics in the other Washington descend into name calling and inaction, we can make progress on important issues like climate change, gun violence, helping our most vulnerable, and building our economy with good paying jobs.
As for change, I would like to see even more coordination between Olympia and our city and county governments. I am proud of the work I have done with Mayors Earling and Gregerson, Sheriff Trenary, County Councilmember Sullivan, and many others, but we can accomplish even more on issues important to our community.
Q: Why do you think you are the best candidate for this position?
My two years in Olympia along with my time on the Edmonds City Council gives me the needed experience to get things done. I am very proud of the bipartisan bills I have passed that help small business, protect the economy, and begin to address the the opioid epidemic. There is much more work to be done, and I believe the relationships I have built in Olympia and around the state will serve the 21st District well.
Q: How can people contact you if they want more information?
My email is firstname.lastname@example.org and you can follow Friends of Strom Peterson on Facebook. Of course, don’t hesitate to stop me on the street and ask me a question. During the session, I encourage people to visit Olympia and always feel free to contact my office if there is anything I can do to help.
Peterson’s only opponent, Alex Hels, did not respond to our questions.
You can learn more about all candidates in the online voter’s pamphlet here. The top two vote getters will advance to the November general election, regardless of party.