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Ericksen Says No Problem Balancing Washington Legislature With EPA Duties

Washington Legislature
Washington state Sen. Doug Ericksen traveled to Washington, D.C. for President Trump's inauguration last month and returned to Olympia earlier this week.

Whether it’s a drive from Bellingham or a flight from Washington D.C., a long commute to Olympia for Washington state lawmakers is normal. That’s what Washington state Sen. Doug Ericksen told press at a briefing Thursday while he discussed his new role under the Trump administration.

Questions on whether he would be able to do both jobs rose after Ericksen accepted a part-time position on the Environmental Protection Agency’s transition team. He addressed those right away.

“Last night in my committee we exec’d out eight bills, which keeps us right on track for average number of bills moving through the committee process,” Ericksen said. “So we’re getting the work done.”

That committee Ericksen mentioned was cancelled twice while he was in D.C. for Trump’s inauguration.

Despite concerns about ethical or legal conflicts, Ericksen said he met with law and ethics professionals at the federal and state level, who ultimately cleared him.

Although Ericksen directly answered questions about his ability to do both jobs, he avoided specifics on how much time he would spend on each side of the country and when.

He did however, confirm there will be significant changes on energy under the new president.