Rossi encourages ideas in Clallam County and across the state

By Lois Krafsky-Perry
Citizen Review Online

Port Angeles, WA - Former Washington State Gubernatorial candidate, Dino Rossi (R) visited Clallam County on July 16 to collect ideas for the Washington Idea Bank, a brainchild of the Forward Washington Foundation. Rossi is president of the Foundation.  Approximately 40 people came to the Port Angeles Senior Center to share their ideas with the possible 2008 candidate.

“I will be in Gig Harbor tomorrow night,” announced Rossi to the camera woman, who was set up early to tape his appearance in Port Angeles.  Many have named the camera folks, ‘the video vampires’ who have allegedly been sent by Governor Christine Gregoire ( D). Rossi said they have been following him from place to place.

“I think a lot of ideas get solved by people closer to the public.  We want grassroots,“ announced Rossi, who served 7 years in the Washington State Senate. He then referred to his website at

Rossi said they are gathering ideas from all across the state, learning what citizens are concerned about, and listening to their suggestions for solutions.  His idea screening board includes; Professor Manuela at Central University, and Ted Dalstrom, the executive director.  Dalton attended the meeting. The current committee members are: Susan Hutchinson of KIRO TV, Lou Guzzo, Chief Policy Counselor for former Governor Dixy Lee Ray; Ted Dahlstrom, Executive Director of the Forward Washington Foundation; and Dr. Mathew Manweller, Professor of Political Science at Central Washington University.

Rossi discussed the wasteful spending growth rate in the state.   With a 33 percent increase, “it is the largest ever,” he said. He explained it might be over a billion dollars by the year 2009.  He says he hears of concerns with runaway spending, the estate death tax plan, and voting. He said the estate death tax plan is running people out of our state.  “Solution: get rid of the death tax,” declared Rossi.

Bob Philpot of Port Angeles expressed his concern about taxes. “Many people don’t have the wherewithal to keep up with taxes, “announced Philpot.

Rossi said the legislature could impose through legislation.

“If I call for the problem, I am going to give you a solution too,” affirmed Rossi.

Sue Forde of Sequim commented that state agencies seem out of control.  “Washington State DOE (Department of Ecology), for example, runs roughshod over people.  The legislature is not doing much at this point,” she said. Forde said Jim Buck did what he could. Perhaps rules made by the agencies should return to the legislature for review to be sure they are in compliance with the intent of the RCW’s, she suggested.

Rossi answered that legislators are not full time and agencies do what they want to do. He agreed that the legislators should review agencies to be sure they are in compliance with RCW’s.

Forde expressed concern with Growth Hearings Boards (GHBs) and problems with the Growth Management Act (GMA). She said the when the GMA first came before the citizens as an initiative, it was soundly rejected.  Maria Cantwell, serving at that time on the Washington State legislature passed it through legislation.  “It’s supposed to be local control, but it is ‘top-down’ management instead,” she said. “Growth Hearings Boards are making their own laws,” she continued. She said there is no oversight.  “One solution is to elect the board members,“suggested Forde.

“I will pass that along to the board,” said Rossi.

Clallam County resident Kay Garrison asked for a clear definition of the word, “emergency”. She asked for a tighter definition. She said tacking on that phrase could often times lock out the public.

Marie Wiggins of Port Angeles has observed that some schools no longer have driver’s education and asked for more direction on this.

Many other concerns were expressed by the people present, with potential solutions offered.  Bob Forde asked Rossi if he is going to run for governor in 2008.  Rossi said he and his team will be making a decision whether or not he will run in October.



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