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Eye On Olympia

Archive for November 2005

Happy New Year…

If you renew your license tabs or register a vehicle after Jan. 1, brace yourself to pay more. New weight fees — approved by lawmakers last spring —are about to kick in.

In addition to the current $30 basic state license tab fee, vehicle owners will pay extra, depending on the weight of what they drive. For light cars — under 4,000 pounds — the fee is an extra $10. For vehicles ranging from 4,000 to 6,000 pounds, it’s $20. From 6,000 to 8,000 pounds, it’s $30.

In addition, motor home owners will now pay $75 to register, regardless of weight. But the license fee for private-use, single-axle trailers weighing 2,000 pounds or less will drop from $30 now to $15.

Other increases: replacing a license plate, which now costs $3.50 a plate, will rise to $12.

Bemused…and intrigued…

“I am bemused by my learned colleague’s knowledge of `repeated reports of sasquatch sightings.’”

—Washington state Supreme Court Justice Tom Chambers, taking issue with fellow Justice Jim Johnson.

Johnson’s point was that a state board wants Ferry County to prove that certain endangered species don’t exist there, even though some of the species — unlike sasquatch — have never been sighted in the county.

(For more on that purported sasquatch siting (summer of 2004, near Republic, Wash.), go to the website of the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization We particularly like the organization’s $10 “2005 Expedition Patch.)

Bad news for buffalo…

Eastern Washington University’s triumph over the Montana Bobcats, 35-14, at the game in Cheney Saturday means that Montana Gov. (and rancher) Brian Schweitzer owes Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire five buffalo steaks.

“The governor expects to collect the buffalo meat from Gov. Schweitzer any day now,” a Gregoire press release said.

But how about a gubernatorial pardon of the poor buffalo?

“He doesn’t live in this state,” came the press office reply. “No jurisdiction.”

The secret to success…

“I’ll declare victory even if we don’t win.”

— I-900 proponent Tim Eyman, getting ready for his election night speech.

As I-912 comes down to the wire…

“The wonder of the First Amendment is that you don’t have to be right every time.”

–- Washington Secretary of State Doug MacDonald, asked on Monday about some of the claims in political ads about Initiative 912 during an interview with Seattle talk-radio station KVI.

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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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