About The Race
Legislators are paid $42,106 annually, plus healthcare benefits. House terms are two years.
- Spokane, WA
- Coffee shop owner
Education: Undergraduate degree from Whitworth University; MBA from George Fox University; executive leadership studies at Harvard University.
Work experience: Owns several Spokane coffee shops; adjunct professor at Whitworth and Gonzaga universities; incumbent state representative; was working as a volunteer youth counselor at Columbine High School during the 1999 massacre that killed 13 and injured 21 others.
Political experience: Three terms in the Washington House of Representatives.
OLYMPIA – The first day of Jay Inslee’s governorship was marked by agreement that Washington needs more jobs but not more taxes, and some disagreements over environmental and social issues.
In an address to the nation, President Barack Obama promised action to prevent future mass shootings in response to Friday’s mass murder at a Connecticut elementary school. In crafting possible related policy changes in the Washington State Legislature, state Rep. Kevin Parker, R-Spokane, will have a unique voice.
The Inland Northwest’s push to expand its growing aerospace industry is dealing with an unexpected obstacle. Boeing Co.
OLYMPIA – For several years, Republicans in the Washington House of Representatives have complained they have essentially been shut out of the budgeting process by majority Democrats. Friday, they stole a march on other legislators by releasing an alternative budget of their own. The House GOP budget has some major differences from the spending plan Gov. Chris Gregoire released in November that called for some $2 billion in cuts and accounting transfers, then proposed “buying back” some of the most difficult program cuts by putting a temporary sales tax increase on a statewide ballot.
OLYMPIA – Washington might get the most optimistic budget outlook in years today when state economists deliver the latest revenue forecast. The demand for state services may be lower and the amount of expected revenue may be higher than last November, signaling a shift of more than $500 million to the good.
Waste and abuse, waste and abuse. It’s the chorus to a tune that is sung more or less constantly during debates about government spending: We don’t need to pay for government programs, we just need to eliminate waste and abuse.
OLYMPIA – House Republicans, who say they are fed up with the slow pace of the budgeting process in a session in which that was supposed to be the main task the Legislature tackled, argued Thursday for a new approach. The state should set aside what it wants to spend on K-12 education first, then figure out what’s left for other state programs. They call it “Fund Education First” and say it’s in line with both the state Constitution’s declaration that education in the state’s public schools is the state’s “paramount duty” and a recent state Supreme Court ruling that the Legislature must do more to meet that duty.
So Kevin Parker said this great thing the other day about the state budget: “We can’t just cut, cut, cut.” My thoughts exactly. Which was not what I expected to hear when Parker, the Republican who represents Spokane’s 6th District in the state House, sat down with me for a chat. It was not too many months after I’d taken a big, fat rhetorical swing at something else Parker had said about state government: “We don’t have a revenue problem.”