Yakima Deputy Mayor goes to Olympia in support of better voting rights

Yakima Deputy Mayor goes to Olympia in support of better voting rights

YAKIMA, Wash. -- Yakima Deputy Mayor Dulce Gutierrez is supporting a package of bills that helps change the voting system in cities around Washington.

Gutierrez joined Governor Jay Inslee in Olympia Friday, along with several voter- rights supporters speaking on ways to make it easier for people to vote.

“What we’re doing is enabling a much smoother and easier process for folks to be voters, to participate in our democracy so ultimately the Washington State Voting Rights Act and its three supplemental bills to make voting easier are going to improve our democracy here in Washington Stater," said Gutierrez.

Gutierrez says the Washington State Voting Rights Act, which allows cities to change from at – large to district – based voting has helped the city of Yakima in a tremendous way.

She says when the city switched to a district – based system she saw more people voting, people seeking council seats and Latinos being elected for the first time.

Nearby cities such as Pasco and Wenatchee have been trying to change their voting system to district- based but have been denied by state law.

Gutierrez says she will be in Olympia again this Wednesday and is hoping to push further with the package of bills so that more cities in Washington can follow in Yakima’s footsteps.

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