HOUSE JOINT MEMORIAL 4025
State of Washington 54th Legislature 1995 Regular Session
By Representatives Kremen, Goldsmith and Hymes
Read first time 02/14/95. Referred to Committee on Trade & Economic Development.
TO THE HONORABLE BILL CLINTON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, AND TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE AND THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, AND TO THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES, IN CONGRESS ASSEMBLED:
We, your Memorialists, the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Washington, in legislative session assembled, respectfully represent and petition as follows:
WHEREAS, Congressional ratification of the North American Free Trade Agreement and the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs demonstrates our nation's commitment to eliminating economic barriers to an open and competitive trading system; and
WHEREAS, Promoting free and open trade with Canada and other nations is in the best economic interests of all Washington citizens; and
WHEREAS, A border crossing fee would run counter to efforts by both Canada and the United States to facilitate the movement of people and goods across the border; and
WHEREAS, Collection of the fees would result in increased congestion at border entry points and disruption of the smooth flow of commercial traffic; and
WHEREAS, Citizens and businesses of Northwest Washington, North Central Washington, and Northeast Washington depend heavily upon thriving, reciprocal economic activity with the citizens of Canada; and
WHEREAS, Imposition of such fees would affect almost one hundred million Canadian and American travelers annually; and
WHEREAS, More than nineteen million people cross the border yearly from Canada into Northwest Washington at crossings at Blaine, Sumas, Point Roberts, and Lynden; and
WHEREAS, More than three hundred thousand Canadian citizens visit Washington state yearly to spend at least one night and contribute more than two hundred fifty million dollars to Washington state's economy; and
WHEREAS, The millions of people entering the United States have a direct and positive effect on the livelihoods of American citizens living near the Canadian border and on citizens throughout Washington state; and
WHEREAS, The proposed fees for visitors entering the United States would result in extreme financial hardship for many citizens and small businesses in Washington state;
NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists respectfully pray that the 1996 federal budget proposal to establish a United States border crossing fee be modified to eliminate the reference to the proposed United States entry fee.
BE IT RESOLVED, That copies of this Memorial be immediately transmitted to the Honorable Bill Clinton, President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and each member of Congress from the State of Washington.
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