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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Testy Exchanges, No Consensus On Governor's Climate Change Panel

File photo of the Washington State Capitol Building

Washington Governor Jay Inslee has been dealt a setback in his campaign to reduce carbon emissions.

Governor Inslee wanted the workgroup to adopt five recommendations to the legislature – including that the state enact a market-based cap on carbon pollution. But when it came time for the Republicans on the panel to weigh-in, they made it clear all of the governor’s proposals were non-starters – at least without more information on the cost.

Inslee said he was disappointed and noted Washington law requires the state to get its greenhouse gas emissions down to 1990 levels by 2020. That led to this exchange with Republican State Representative Shelly Short.

“Now I’ve heard two members of these committees to see it’s really not that important to meet those targets," said Inslee. "And I think it’s going to be difficult.”

“No, no, no ... you started this fight,” responded Short.

In the end, the bipartisan panel agreed to disagree and adjourned.

Next up, a final opportunity for public input. Then, assuming no consensus emerges, the panel will likely produce a series of minority reports to send to the legislature

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."