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Honeyford named to chair committee

District senator to chair Commerce and Trade Committee



Sen. Jim Honeyford will be the chair of the Senate Commerce and Trade Committee when the 2003 legislative session begins in January.

Honeyford was named chair of the panel during a meeting of the Senate Committee on Committees in SeaTac. The Commerce and Trade Committee will deal with commerce, international trade and workforce training issues.

"This will be an important committee in light of the state's economic problems and high unemployment rate," said Honeyford. "The Legislature and governor need to do everything possible to improve Washington's economic and jobs climate. Many of these proposals likely will go through my committee, so we have important work ahead of us."

Last week, Honeyford was elected caucus whip by his Senate Republican colleagues. But he agreed to step down from that post when he was asked to chair the Commerce and Trade Committee. Honeyford served as caucus whip in 2001.

"While I enjoyed serving as part of our caucus leadership team, I definitely look forward to becoming chair of the committee that will handle many of the bills designed to improve our state's economy. Improving our economy should be the number one issue next session in Olympia," said Honeyford.

Honeyford will serve on two other Senate committees: Natural

Resources, Energy and Water; and Ways and Means.

"I will be the lead person on water issues for the Natural Resources, Energy and Water Committee or the chair of a water subcommittee if one is formed. Either way, I'm excited to again play a key role on water issues facing the Yakima Valley and Washington," said Honeyford.

"I've served on Ways and Means for several years. Since it deals with the state budget, it is usually a very busy and important committee, and it will be even more so as we try to fix the $2 billion hole in the budget," said the 15th District legislator.



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