Reps. Dan Griffey and Travis Couture to Governor: ‘Now is the time for action!’

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CONTACT: Hanna Scott, Public Information Officer for Rep. Dan Griffey | 360-968-3938
Daniel McDonald, Public Information Officer for Rep. Travis Couture | 360-786-7182

Reps. Dan Griffey and Travis Couture to Governor: ‘Now is the time for action!’

Rep. Dan Griffey, R-Allyn, and Rep. Travis Couture, R-Allyn, released the following statement regarding House Bill 1813:

“We were thrilled to learn yesterday that Supreme Living announced it would end plans to open a facility in Tenino that would serve as less restrictive alternative (LRA) housing for sexually violent predators (SVPs) transitioning out of total confinement on McNeil Island.

“That was a big victory, especially for the Tenino community. But it does not solve the larger problem.

Enumclaw and other communities are still facing the relocation of sexually violent predators into their neighborhoods, and we must take a stand to protect the most vulnerable.

“My seatmate, Rep. Travis Couture, and I, along with many legislators on both sides of the aisle, introduced House Bill 1813 to place a two-year moratorium on SVP homes being sited in communities in order to create a workgroup to study the issue and find the best path forward. The current process lacks transparency and adequate notification to the very communities that will be immediately affected.

“Unfortunately, the bill was not given a hearing in the House Community Safety, Justice, and Reentry Committee in time to make it beyond the policy and fiscal cutoff deadlines. While I fully intend to revive this effort next year, we need immediate action before it is too late.

“We are calling on Governor Inslee to step forward and protect the most vulnerable in this crisis, our children, and survivors of sex crimes.

“Waiting is a game of Russian roulette.

“We are asking that Governor Inslee use his authority to put this moratorium in place in defense of those who cannot defend themselves. He has generously acted in the past and we expect no less now.

“It is imperative that the task force has an opportunity to really dig into this issue and be allowed the needed time to come back with proper proposals that both ensure the constitutional rights of SVPs are respected and that the safety of all Washington communities is prioritized.

“For now, accommodations can be made on McNeil Island by repurposing existing facilities as LRA housing throughout the moratorium to meet constitutional requirements, while protecting our communities from predators that have been deemed highly likely to reoffend.

“We are willing to partner with the Governor, concerned citizens and those running the needed facilities. We must put all differences aside for the sake of the people we serve. We cannot afford to look back and say to ourselves that we could have done better when the opportunity to do so is with us now.”


Washington State House Republican Communications