COLUMBIA BASIN HERALD: Republican gubernatorial candidate visits Moses Lake

This recent article from the Columbia Basin Herald highlights Bill’s plan to refocus our state on helping the private sector generate jobs in communities all across Washington and on ensuring every kid has access to a quality education and an equal chance to get ahead.

Bill Bryant, Republican candidate for governor, received a standing ovation after speaking to a packed house at Pillar Rock Grill Saturday evening at the Grant County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day dinner.

According the Columbia Basin Herald:

[Bryant] was the headliner of the evening, speaking to a packed house at Pillar Rock Grill about the bedrock of his campaign for the governor’s seat: creating family-wage job growth statewide and improving education for all Washington’s children.

Regarding bringing good family wage jobs to Washington:

Bryant began his address Saturday night by challenging the notion that Washington is booming with job opportunity. He said in recent years, “even in King County, we have lost over 7,000 jobs that pay between $35,000 and $75,000.”

“Communities like Longview, Hoquiam, Port Angeles, Shelton … Moses Lake, Wenatchee (and) Ferndale are all struggling with slowdowns or shutdowns of factories that are really the bedrock of their community’s middle class jobs,” he said.

Regarding education, Bryant:

...pointed to pitfalls in Washington’s education system, which he said is “failing a lot of kids.” Bryant said about 25 percent of ninth-graders will not graduate from high school in Washington, pointing to the need to bolster the state’s education system.

“I would argue if we want to really close that gap and make opportunity available to everyone, we have work to do,” he said.Bryant likened his goals to Abraham Lincoln’s notion of “the right to rise.” Lincoln’s right to rise, he said, was built around two ideas: that government should invest in infrastructure that allows the private sector to generate jobs, and that everybody should have access to high-quality education…

…“Today, the quality of education you get is largely dependent on your school district, on your zip code, on whether or not you live in an area that’s wealthy enough to pass levies and provide kids with programs that other kids in school districts simply don’t have access to,” he said. “That is morally wrong and it’s undermining our economy. But we can fix it and we can keep these kids in school.”

Bryant said he wants to use the “huge amount of money the state is spending on education now (to) empower principals and teachers” to use the dollars in ways that meet the needs for their student.

In addition, Bryant said something needs to be done to help more students graduate from high school. He spoke of his goal to “reinvent” the last two years of high school so it is relevant for students and what their post-graduation goals are. He said many students who don’t want to go to college are dropping out because schools are focused on getting students college-ready. A better system, Bryant said, would offer apprenticeship and internship programs for students who are not college-bound so they can graduate prepared to earn a family-wage job.

The state needs leadership and a strategic plan:

In order to accomplish these goals, Bryant said, the state needs a governor with vision and one who will work hard. He said Inslee is neither engaged, nor does he have a vision or a plan, which earned applause from Grant County Republicans in attendance…

…That strategic plan, he said, is missing in Olympia. He titled the political scene in Olympia “a culture of ‘no’” and offered four steps he could take in his first four years as the governor to create a “culture of ‘yes.’”

Bryant’s first step would be changing leadership in Olympia. He said “we need to take a pressure hose to Olympia” and find new leadership. Second, Bryant said he would announce a four-year, zero-base budget initiative on his first day in office, if elected. This would involve a budget rebuild from zero for every state department over the course of four years and the development of long-term strategic objectives for each.

 Regarding the state regulations that are hurting our local businesses and jobs:

…Bryant said he would put a moratorium on all new regulations until departments can justify those they already have in place. Finally, Bryant said as governor, he would aim to eliminate “redundant and uncertain permitting practices that are keeping investments from coming to Washington state.”

Bryant concluded by emphasizing jobs and education:

These two things — focusing on generating jobs and improving education for everybody — will not be easy, Bryant said, but they can be done.“If we focus on those two things … we can lead Washington into our next frontier,” Bryant said.

For a complete copy of the article [CLICK HERE].


Mike Foster