Policy fights, political tension loom for state lawmakers

Another transportation matter is Inslee’s push for a low carbon fuel standard. On this, the governor will run into opposition from Hobbs.

House Democrats passed a bill last year that died in the Senate Transportation Committee.

“I think it is much more likely to pass this Legislature this year,” Inslee said Thursday at the Associated Press Legislative Preview. He said it will have only a “minor impact” on the cost of gasoline and is a better approach than imposing fees on carbon emissions or creating a cap-and-trade system — ideas he’s previously proposed.

Hobbs contends a fuel standard will push up gas prices and prove to be a more expensive way to reduce emissions than either carbon fees or cap-and-trade. Also, he told civic leaders in Everett that imposing a clean fuel standard would make it harder to pass another multi-year transportation package to pay for major projects, like replacing the U.S. 2 trestle and complying with a U.S. Supreme Court order to remove fish passage barriers.

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