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Inslee to GOP: Untwist knickers over carbon standards

OLYMPIA -- Gov. Jay Inslee says there's still a gap between Democrats and Republicans in the Legislature over a transportation package. (Jim Camden)
OLYMPIA -- Gov. Jay Inslee says there's still a gap between Democrats and Republicans in the Legislature over a transportation package. (Jim Camden)

Inslee said legislators have moved to the center, but still haven't come together on a transportation package.

OLYMPIA -- With time running out in the legislative session, Gov. Jay Inslee acknowledged "something's got to break very very soon" to pass a package that would pay for major transportation improvements through higher gas taxes."

That something, however, is not going to be a promise from him not to impose by executive order low carbon fuel standards that would raise gasoline costs. There's no plan to do that, Inslee said, and any standards would only come after extensive study, conversations with interest groups and public hearings.

Discussions with lawmakers take place almost daily, Inslee said, and both Republicans and Democrats have moved closer to the middle on a transportation package. But there's  no agreement.

Republicans said Wednesday fears that Inslee would impose carbon fuel standards by executive order after the session ended, thus raising gas prices even higher than the 11.5 cents in increased fuel taxes, had some of their members balking at the transportation package.

They're just using the carbon fuel tax as an excuse for inaction, Inslee said today. There's no proposal, so there's  no way to calculate costs.

"I think everybody needs to take a deep breath and not get their knickers in a twist," he said.



Jim Camden
Jim Camden joined The Spokesman-Review in 1981 and retired in 2021. He is currently the political and state government correspondent covering Washington state.

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