Wilcox on Inslee’s Phase 3: ‘Looks Like He May Have Listened to Us After All’

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Following Gov. Jay Inslee’s announcement Thursday that all counties would be in Phase 3 of his reopening plan starting March 22, House Minority Leader J.T. Wilcox responded by saying that while the Democratic governor has been dismissive of a recent plan by Republicans to reopen, “it looks like he may have listened to us after all since he adopted elements of it.” 

Under Inslee’s Phase 3, most retail, dining, fitness and entertainment venues will be allowed to reopen under 50 percent capacity, and outdoor sporting events will allow attendees at 25 percent capacity. Inslee on Friday also announced an order prohibiting schools from not offering some type of in-person instruction. 

The plan is similar in scope to a plan House and Senate Republicans unveiled the week prior. 

“While businesses and venues now have some much-needed certainty moving forward, families still face uncertainty when it comes to kids returning to the classroom,” Wilcox, R-Yelm, said in a statement Thursday. “Republicans will continue to push the governor and Democrats to do more to get students safely back to in-class learning. This is long overdue and schools know how to do it safely.” 

Wilcox also noted that they need to work on reform to the governor’s emergency powers, which he believes is not a partisan issue. 

“House Republicans have proposed legislation to restore this proper balance and the well-being of our state demands collaboration on this issue,” he said. 

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