Senator Doug Ericksen (R-Ferndale) is probably the most influential and powerful GOP legislator in the State Senate, and Thursday he politely 'blasted' Gov. Inslee over his 'ban' on construction projects.

After initially indicating all construction could continue during his Stay Home executive order, Inslee 'clarified' it saying only projects that are specifically for healthcare, public use or government can continue. This means thousands of homes, office building, industrial and other business jobs are idle, and workers not getting paid.

Senator Ericksen sent a letter to Inslee that read in part:

“To place public construction projects ahead of private construction is inequitable, “It sends the wrong message to our citizenry that government is putting itself ahead of everyone else.”

If the shutdown of private construction is a medical necessity, then governmental construction should be halted as well."

 Ericksen pointed out the virus does not differentiate between public and private construction projects, and he is urging Inslee and others to modify the executive order to allow all construction to move ahead. Ericksen says this will put thousands of workers back on the job, getting paid, and in the immediate future will help the state. It would result in thousands of workers being able to withdraw their unemployment claims, actually saving the state money.

 Ericksen finished his letter with this:

“All construction must be treated the same,.  We should put the health of the populace first, and the needs of government second, and treat everyone equally under the law.”

  No word on if Inslee will modify the order.