Ericksen encouraged by judge’s action against Inslee energy rule

FERNDALE…Sen. Doug Ericksen today praised a recent court ruling that a core section of an energy-regulation rule adopted by Gov. Jay Inslee’s administration in 2016 is unlawful. The decision came Friday from a judge in Thurston County, where lawsuits against state agencies are considered, and prompted this statement from Ericksen, R-Ferndale and chair of the Senate committee on energy and environmental policy:

“The governor is now 0-for-2 in his efforts to massively increase energy costs in Washington and in turn push our manufacturing jobs to other states and overseas. After his fellow Democrats in the House of Representatives said no to a cap-and-trade scheme in 2015, he ordered the Department of Ecology to go around elected lawmakers and come up with this rule the following year. It’s no surprise that the judge agreed with those who correctly challenged the rule and found that in sidestepping the lawmaking process, the governor also overstepped, because Ecology doesn’t have the authority to do what he wants.

“It’s amazing that Governor Inslee travels around the nation and world talking about energy taxes that even his home state won’t support. And he is quick to go after Trump Administration rules, with help from our state’s lawsuit-happy attorney general, but when it’s about rules the governor wants, the law seems to be an afterthought.

“Should the governor make another run at cap-and-trade programs, new energy taxes, and low-carbon fuel standards in 2018, I expect he’ll learn that raising the cost of the energy we use to heat our homes and power our lives will not be popular, even when Democrats hold majorities in the Legislature.”