WALLA WALLA, Washington – State Representative-Elect Skyler Rude is ready to get to work in Olympia. With less than two months before the 2019 Legislative Session begins, Rude is staying busy meeting with constituents.
Rude, a Walla Walla Republican represents the sprawling District No. 16 in the Washington House of Representatives after incumbent Terry Nealey retired after serving four terms.
The 16th Legislative District covers Walla Walla and Columbia counties, as well as parts of Benton and Franklin counties.
“It’s a Republican district,” Rude said. “I feel my political views reflect the majority of the constituents here.”
He says his No. 1 priority in the upcoming legislative session is fiscal restraint.
“Anything I can do to help strengthen the state fiscally I’m on board with,” he said, adding the easy route is to go to Olympia and spend money.
Another issue Rude hopes to address is Washington State Correctional Industries, which is staffed by inmates in the prison system. One of the things they make are corrective glasses for children on Medicaid. He said a teacher brought to his attention that a First-grade student had to wait five months to receive the correct pair of glasses. According to Rude, quality issues and the lack of timely delivery need to be addressed. He’s hopes to propose a bill that will look into this matter further. He said he’s also open to taking away the eye-wear manufacturing contract-based and letting the private market handle it if necessary.
Rude is no stranger to Olympia as he’s spent the past three and a half years serving as a legislative aide for Sen. Maureen Walsh (R-Walla Walla). He left that position to run for office.
The 2019 Legislature starts Jan. 14 in Olympia. Rude plans to arrive a few days early to prepare.