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Dino Rossi

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5th District, Senator

1. Name: Dino Rossi

2. Age: 41

3. Political party affiliation: Republican

4. Occupation: Commercial Real Estate Investment Broker

5. Family members: Wife; Terry, Children; Juliauna (9), Jake

(6), Joseph (4), Jillian (just born)

6. Why are you running for office? My grandfather came to

this country at the turn of the century and worked in the Black

Diamond coalmines to feed the family. My father became the first in our family

to graduate from college and went into what my grandfather thought was

the noblest profession of all: teaching. I am the youngest of seven kids

raised on a schoolteacher's salary. Only in America can the grandson of an

Italian immigrant coal miner become a state Senator. That is precisely why

I am running for office: to give back to the community that has been so

good to the Rossi family.

7. What are the issues that the constituents in your area would

like you to address? As I have been doorbelling around the district, a

major issue people talk with me about is how high property taxes are.

Another issue people bring up is traffic congestion.

8. How would you address those issues?

I sponsored a bill last year to phase out the state portion

of the property tax, which is about 20-25 percent of your property-tax

bill. Using money above the I-601 spending limit (money normally used

for such things as tax cuts), we can phase out the state portion without

affecting ongoing spending on education and social services. If re-elected, I

will continue working to get this bill passed and bring some meaningful

tax relief to Washington citizens. To address traffic congestion, we need

a balance of roads and transit. What works in Seattle does not

necessarily work in the Snoqualmie Valley. We need to increase road capacity to

accommodate the amount of cars and buses on the roads. We can build

more roads through bonding and other financing mechanisms. In the

short term, we can immediately increase road capacity with minimal cost

by passing the bill I have sponsored to open up HOV lanes during

non-peak hours.

9. In the Snoqualmie Valley, as well as throughout Puget

Sound region, growth is a major concern of many residents. Is the

state Growth Management Act effective in helping local governments

make smart decisions about development? Should it be changed? How

should it be changed? The Growth Management Act is effective in helping

local governments because it requires them to make plans for deciding

when, where and how much growth will take place in their area. Growth is a

local issue. A senator from Wenatchee should not tell us where growth

should take place in Snoqualmie Valley, and I should not tell Wenatchee

where growth should take place. One size does not fit all. It is a local issue

for cities and counties and they need the flexibility in deciding when,

where and how much growth will take place.

10. What can state legislators do to address concerns about

protecting salmon and salmon habitat? As a member of the Senate

Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation Committee, as well as a board

member of the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust and the Nature

Conservancy, I have been deeply involved with issues of salmon protection.

The more tangible issue state legislators can address is the protection of

salmon habitat. A more concrete solution to the harvesting of salmon will

most likely come from the federal government. The federal government,

the Canadian government and Indian tribes must all come together to

address the issue of salmon harvesting. In cooperation with our state

government, we can create a long-term solution to ensure salmon populations

in the future.

11. Water is becoming scarcer as more people move into the

area. One example of that is the North Fork of the Issaquah Creek

drying up this summer. What can be done to protect our water

resources? There is not a lack of water in this

region, but we do have a retention/storage problem. Our solution to

solving our water issues must deal with the retention problem. Our excess

water is not kept in this area and we need to work to keep the water we have.

The Department of Ecology is not helping matters because they are not

moving fast enough to process water right permits. Things have gotten worse in

the department and water right applications continue to stack up.

12. Lastly, why should a voter cast his or her ballot for you?

I have never forgotten who sent me to Olympia: YOU. My door has always

been, and always will be, open for you to come and discuss issues on your

mind. Just as the Snoqualmie Valley residents and I worked in putting

forward the Dane Rempfer bill, by working together, we can solve our

problems and make this community a better place to live. I appreciate the

support of the Snoqualmie Valley community for the Rempfers and for the

"Rempfer Hit-and-Run Bill" — legislation

that now puts a harsher punishment on those that flee the scene of a

hit-and-run incident. Thank you for the honor of serving you in Olympia for the

last four years and I hope to have the honor of serving you again.

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