Dave on the Issues

Click on an issues section below to view Dave's ideas.

The Issues

Dave is a bipartisan leader who is fighting to lower healthcare costs for seniors and working families. Like you, Dave is frustrated with the soaring costs of prescription drugs. After meeting with constituents and healthcare professionals, Dave wrote HB 1979 to cap the cost of asthma inhalers and epi-pens at $35 for a 30-day supply of these life-saving drugs. HB 1979 passed both the House and the Senate unanimously in 2024, and the legislation will start helping residents of our state this January. The legislation will help ensure families can get the preventative care they need—and reduce emergency room visits.

 

Working across the aisle, Dave supported other key legislation in previous years, including:
· Lowering the cost of prescription drugs for our seniors and families (House Bill 1224 and Senate Bill 6088)
· Reducing the cost of insulin, a life-saving drug needed by so many in our community (House Bill 2662)
· Ending surprise emergency room medical billing (House Bill 1688)
· Funding critical mental health and substance recovery services across our region

 

After listening to doctors and nursing home experts, Dave Paul fought to increase Medicaid rates to help rural healthcare providers and nursing homes in our District. Dave’s work has helped keep homes open in our community, ensuring seniors get the care they need.

 

Dave supports women’s reproductive rights, access to family planning, and the right to privacy. He is pro-choice and is endorsed by Planned Parenthood.

 

Looking Ahead to the 2025 Session:
Dave is leading efforts to improve youth mental health outcomes in our community. Dave’s work has been instrumental in helping young people and coordinating services across healthcare providers, public health agencies, K12 schools, and nonprofit organizations. He will be working to make the funding of this program permanent in the 2025 budget cycle.

 

After meeting with constituents and medical professionals, Dave introduced legislation in 2024 (House Bill 2166) to increasing access to portable Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST), which would let paramedics and EMT’s recognize medical jewelry linked to Do Not Resuscitate orders. The bill also funded a database of people who established such orders. During one hearing, over 500 Washingtonians signed into support the bill, which passed the House unanimously. Unfortunately, the bill did not receive a hearing in the Senate. Dave is already working with legislators and medical providers to pass this important policy in 2025.
“The engine of our economy starts with outstanding K-12, trade school, community college, and university programs that generate living-wage jobs.”

“The engine of our economy starts with outstanding K-12, trade school, apprenticeship, community college, and university programs that generate living-wage jobs.” -Dave Paul

Dave understands the importance of K-12 public education and works closely with schools throughout the 10th District to ensure our students are prepared for the jobs of tomorrow.

Dave is a leader in supporting students to find pathways to living-wage jobs. He works closely with school districts, colleges, legislators, labor, employers, and advocates to strengthen dual-credit programs like Running Start, CTE Dual Credit, and College in the High School. These are proven, cost-effective programs that help reduce the cost of college and student debt while helping students get to family-wage jobs sooner. Dave sponsored legislation to:

· Reduce the costs of Running Start and College in the High School for working families (House Bill 1973)

· Establish a Running Start program to allow students to take these valuable classes in the summer term (House Bill 2864)

Dave works closely with educators to expand support for Career and Technical Training Skills Centers. These Skills Centers provide valuable occupational training to high school students, allowing students start a living-wage job immediately after high school—and without student debt.

Dave sponsored legislation to better support paraeducators, and he will continue to fight for fully funding public schools and special education programs.

As Vice Chair of the House Education Committee, Dave helped ensure the Legislature removed high-stakes testing as a requirement for high school graduation (House Bill 1599).

College Affordability

Dave is also committed to affordable college education and is a champion for two-year community college and technical education opportunities for Washingtonians.

In 2022, Dave sponsored legislation to expand the Washington Opportunity Scholarship to include apprenticeships and help more students in rural communities. Supported by both Democrats and Republicans, House Bill 1805 will help more train more nurses and healthcare providers.

Because of Dave’s bipartisan work, high school juniors and seniors can now enroll in tuition-free Running Start college courses in summer quarter starting in 2022. This is a landmark victory for students and families—and will help reduce college costs for thousands of students in our community and across the state.

Looking Ahead

Dave is working with teachers and students to develop to strengthen high school advisory programs to better help students with their next steps after graduation, including exploring career opportunities, finding training programs, and applying for financial aid.

Dave will continue his work with K12 career and technical training centers, high schools, apprenticeship programs, and community colleges to connect young people to summer employment that will lead living-wage jobs after graduation.

Dave in a discussion with two potential voters

“Our communities are stronger when we have a healthy economy that provides equitable opportunities to all–not just the wealthy and those who have access to ample resources. Too often, those without political representation are marginalized and suffer economic and societal injustices, including lack of equal pay and jobs that provide a living wage.” -Dave Paul

The engine of our economy starts with outstanding K-12, trade school, community college, and university programs that generate living-wage jobs. We must ensure that residents of the 10th District have access to training for the jobs of tomorrow and are paid justly for their work.

Dave will continue to champion legislation that:

· Ensures workers earn a living wage relative to the area they live in – including the 10th District

· Guarantees the right of unions to collectively bargain

· Mandates better parental leave policies, provides more childcare options, and encourages more flexible work schedules

· Requires pay transparency in order to allow workers to see if they are unpaid compared to their peers

· Builds pathways that connect more residents to apprentice, community college, and university programs

Deception Pass Bridge

Protecting Our Quality of Life

“I’m committed to partnering with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support and introduce legislation that protects our natural resources, creates a robust clean energy economy, and encourages careers in renewable energy.” -Dave Paul

The 10th District is a beautiful place to call home. Dave has been a champion for cleaning up and preserving our public lands for fishing, hunting, and recreation. In 2019, he delivered over $13 million in funding to improve and repair local hatcheries and state parks.

Dave will continue to work to reduce the effects of climate change on the industries vital to the 10th District, such as farming, fishing, and tourism.

In the Legislature, Dave fought for common sense solutions for our District and our State, including:

· Reducing greenhouse gases by investing in farming and forestry to capture excess carbon (House Bill 2311)

· Transitioning to a 100% clean electrical grid that phases out coal-fired electricity by 2025 (Senate Bill 5116)

Washington state is in an unique position to develop a strong clean energy economy that provides workers with living-wage jobs: it has a robust university system that includes top-tier research institutions, it has strong manufacturing and technology industries, and it has a great community and technical college system that can train workers.

“Our Veterans, Active Duty Service Members, and their Spouses are incredibly talented and contribute so much to our community. I’m proud to have led the expansion of services for veterans, active-duty personnel, reservists, and their families at Skagit Valley College. In the State Legislature, it’s been an honor to collaborate with Democrats and Republicans to lead efforts to increase support for veterans and military families.  -Dave Paul

At Skagit Valley College, Dave Paul led the expansion of services for veterans, including the creation of the Veteran Student Center, the hiring of Vet Corps staffers, and the formation of a student Veterans Club.

In Olympia, Dave is a leader in working across the aisle to increase support for veterans, active duty servicemembers, reservists, and their families by increasing access to education opportunities, affordable housing, and healthcare.

After meeting with veterans and hearing their concerns, Dave sponsored bipartisan legislation to help remove hurdles for military families, including:

· Granting veterans and their children in-state tuition as they transition from military service to civilian life (House Bill 2543 passed unanimously in 2020)

· Ensuring veterans who earned a campaign badge or campaign medal receive full retirement benefits from the state of Washington (House Bill 2544 passed unanimously in 2020)

Dave understands that our state must do more to support the mental health and wellbeing of veterans. It’s a tragic fact that more veterans die by suicide than in their military service and combat. One important step is the passage of HB 1181 in 2022. This bill will help prevent suicide among Washington’s veterans and military service members by providing better resources to community organizations and health care providers to develop suicide prevention grant programs.

Dave is also collaborating with lawmakers and educators to create stronger educational pathways for reservists and veterans, including the expansion the Washington National Guard Post-Secondary Grant to make college and professional training more affordable.

Looking ahead to the next legislative session, Dave will continue his bipartisan work to ensure expeditionary medal recipients receive the public employee retirement benefits they have earned at the national level. In 2022, he sponsored HB 1804, which passed the House unanimously but died in the Senate. He’s already working with Democratic and Republican leaders to reintroduce the bill in 2023—and get our veterans the support they deserve.

“Dave Paul has provided needed leadership for our communities. He cuts through party lines to do what’s best for the people he serves. His work has been essential for public safety!” Kevin Dresker, Oak Harbor Police Chief*

Everyone deserves to feel safe in our community, and Dave is working closely with first responders, local elected officials, and community members to improve public safety.

Our local public safety agencies are understaffed, a problem that is made worse as many police officers, deputies, and fire fighters near retirement. Dave is a leading voice for expanding the Basic Law Enforcement Acadamy. He also supports adding training sites in Snohomish and Skagit counties, which will greatly help local agencies with the recruitment of new police officers.

Dave supports increasing pay for first responders so that they can earn a living wage. In 2022, he cosponsored HB 1785 to ensure Washington State Troopers receive a competitive wage for their dangerous work.

Dave believes that local and state agencies must continue to invest in public safety. Law enforcement agencies should have embedded mental health counselors and social workers to partner with officers when assisting individuals in crisis.

Dave is a strong advocate for modernizing our 911 systems. This is crucial for rural communities like the 10th District. He cosponsored HB 1703, which will assist counties in developing regional approaches to handling 911 emergency calls. This legislation also will help coordinate 911 calls with the new 988 behavioral health emergency system that is being launched this summer. Dave is a leader in our state’s work to strengthen training and support for 911 operators.

Dave also secured the state funding needed to upgrade Skagit County’s 911 emergency communications system, which improves the safety of both the public and law enforcement officials.

Dave has been endorsed by:

· Don McDermott, Skagit County Sheriff

· Kevin Dresker, Oak Harbor Police Chief*

· Washington State Patrol Troopers Association

· International Association of Firefighters Local 66

Dave is proud to prioritize your safety in Olympia. He will continue to commit to the safety of our community in the next session.

*Titles are for identification purposes only and do not imply endorsement.

The rising costs of gas, food, and housing are having a major impact on working families, residents, and seniors in our community—and our state must do a better job addressing affordability. I’m looking forward to getting back to Olympia to advocate for tax cuts, reducing the cost of college education, and supporting small businesses,” Dave Paul.

 

Many in our community are still struggling to make ends meet. Dave has worked to support small businesses, help local families, and strengthen our communities and local economy.

 

Dave wrote legislation in 2024 to help lower the costs of healthcare. HB 1979 caps the cost of asthma inhalers and epi-pens at $35 for a 30-day supply of these life-saving drugs.

 

Dave is a leader in improving housing affordability, especially workforce housing in rural areas. He supported legislation to make it easier to build duplexes and townhomes (HB 1110 and HB 2071) and mother-in-law homes and units (HB 1337) and create a loan program to accelerate workforce housing (HB 1892). He’s fought to improve the permitting process for housing construction (SB 5290). Dave secured millions of dollars to help local non-profits build affordable housing throughout the 10th District.

 

Dave is a champion for improving college affordability. He created the summer Running Start program so that high school juniors and seniors can enroll in tuition-free college courses in the summer. This is great for both students and their families, allowing young people to get a head start on their college education.

 

Dave is a leader in advocating for tax relief. In 2020, he led efforts to stop a proposal from the Department of Licensing to raise business fees. In 2022, Dave sponsored HB 2018 to create a holiday from sales tax over the Labor Day weekend. Unfortunately, though HB 2018 passed the House, it died in the Senate. Also in 2022, Dave supported efforts to bring tax relief to many small businesses by permanently increasing the B&O small business tax credit and filing threshold (SB 5980).