The Town Crier had the honor of being invited to the capital to shadow Representative Rossetti as he went about his day, giving insight into the daily life of a Washington Lawmaker. When I arrived at the Capital at 8am, I was told to go to a landmark sun dial that sat behind the Legislative Building. From there I met Rosetti and was taken into one of the buildings, and I followed Rep. Rossetti into a committee meeting room, where the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee had been conducting a meeting. Representative Brian Blake was head Chair of the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee, and the committee was looking at passing a new bill that would deal with the requirements of having either "resident" or "non-resident" status. There are fishermen who currently live in Washington but do not qualify for the "residential" price because they have not possessed a Washington State ID for 90 days. During the meeting a constituent of the public stepped forward to raise a point on an ongoing issue he has been having with the fishing licensing in Washington State, the man stepped forward to testify:
"I went online to get my license for fishing and when I got down to the end it asked me if I was resident or non-resident. Come to find out after spending all of this money that I may be a resident of Washington State, but I don't qualify as a resident to fish. The difference between the prices is enough to make an old man think twice about getting a license, but what I would like to do is put my support behind this bill and have it pass for change. I'd like to just add that I owe a lot to this state." The committee discussed what other states are doing for their out-of-state or "non-resident" and decided to table the bill so that it could be further explored.
After the man gave his testimony he stepped down and Representative Rossetti went to the podium, and sat in front of the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. Rossetti addressed Representative Blake, "Chair, your leadership has been amazing and there couldn't be someone better to do the job," (Rossetti was touting his fellow representative from District 19). Rep. Rossetti went straight to the business of what he wanted to say: "I know it sounds like I'm blowing smoke (about the joke), but wildfires this year have been no joke." Rossetti was there to introduce a new house bill, that enhanced citizen input on WDFW work groups. "Really when it comes down to it, the people are who are important and it's the people's voice and participation that puts the emphasis on this bill."
After Rep. Rossetti brought the new house bill forward, it was time that he headed out of this meeting and into the next, though the meeting was not over.
Rossetti finished presenting and turned and directly left the room, as one of the security personnel came over to warn me that I needed to follow. I sprinted down the hall and caught up with Rep. Rossetti. The next meeting I had the pleasure of following Representative Rossetti into can be seen in the next issue of the Town Crier.