Governor Inslee Issues Partial Vetoes on Climate Legislation

Yesterday, Governor Jay Inslee penned partial vetoes on two pieces of climate legislation.

The first veto was in regards to sections 6 and 22 of the Climate Commitment Act (SB 5126).

In a letter to the senate, Inslee wrote, “Section 6 requires the development of an improved consultation framework for state agencies to communicate and collaborate with tribes on climate investments made under the act. I strongly support the need for this work, as there are multiple new programs authorized under this act that require the state and tribes to work together. However, this section also requires tribes to provide their consent for climate projects funded by the CCA that might impact tribal interests, which differs from our current government-to-government approach, and does not properly recognize the mutual, sovereign relationship between tribal governments and the state. Although I am vetoing this Section, I will be requesting formal consultation with Tribal leaders to develop improved consultation with Tribal leaders to develop improved consultation procedures that strengthen our ability to work together as both sovereign governments and committed partners to advance our many mutual interests.”

Regarding his veto to Section 22, Inslee said, “Section 22 primarily provides a convenient summary of compliance obligations under the Act that is duplicative of the same key compliance obligations and authorizing provisions that are well established and defined in other sections of the Act.”

He went on to write about how the Department of Ecology has rulemaking authorization and that by removing Section 22, he is removing an internal inconsistency with regard to the expiration date of allowances.

In a separate letter to the Washington State House of Representatives, Inslee vetoed language that linked the Clean Fuel Standard to the Transportation package.

“Subsection (8) of Section 3 operates to delay the assignment of compliance obligations or the generation of credits ‘under this chapter’ until a separate additive transportation revenue act becomes law,” the letter goes on to outline the scope of the governor’s powers versus the legislature’s authority and states that the governor vetoed the section because “we cannot delay its implementation until some unknown time in the future- the crisis is now, and we must act now.”

For more information about the latest bills Gov. Inslee is signing into law, you can check out his Medium page here.

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