To get the New Year of on the right foot I thought I’d introduce you, or re-introduce you, to the WITA Team, starting with Rick Finnigan.

Rick has been awarded “Best Lawyer in Communications in the State of Washington” for the past eight or nine years (he’s lost count) and the work he’s done for WITA certainly backs that up.

In just the past few weeks Rick has drafted comments for the Federal Communications Commission, advised the UTC on the proper treatment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, and provided us with a legal context for issues ranging from potential changes to the UTC’s COLR regulations to PUD retail authority.  Another on-going issue which Rick has provided guidance to us is the court’s interpretation of the state constitution’s prohibition against the gift of public funds to private individuals or companies.  The understanding of this issue has been critical to the creation and continuation of the State Fund.

While Dan and I spend most of our time on the state legislature Rick monitors FCC and UTC working groups and orders.  However, he also helps us on almost a daily basis during session with our interpretation of legislation.  During this time, which has lasted as much as six months, it’s not unusual for me to contact Rick and ask him to get me schooled up on a particular issue as I’m on my way to a meeting or legislative hearing.  In addition Rick is often tasked with gathering data for us from WITA members so we can quickly respond to a request or a concern from a legislator.