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Parrish canvasses, petitions for IP 10

Rep. Julie Parrish, R-West Linn, has been collecting signatures on a voter-approval tolling initiative while canvassing for her reelection.

COURTESY PHOTO - Rep. Julie Parrish, R-West LinnRep. Julie Parrish is the newest chief petitioner for Initiative Petition 10, a measure for 2020 that would require voter approval for tolls on existing roadways.

The independent-thinking Republican from West Linn also is campaigning for reelection to House District 37.

One reason that she joined the initiative effort, she said, is that tolling is a primary issue constituents bring up when she is canvassing for their vote in the Nov. 6 general election.

Democrat Rachel Prusak, a nurse practitioner from West Linn, has challenged Parrish for her House seat.

Now that she's part of the initiative effort, Parrish said, she is even bringing her petition sheets when she goes door-to-door.

"It is one of the hot priority issues of this election cycle," Parrish said.

She also brought her petition sheets to a recent family gathering, her family's "Thanksgiving in July" celebration.

"There were people far across the political spectrum there," Parrish said. "I got my clipboard out and said, 'Hey, I'm gathering signatures on this," and everybody who I had a chance to have a conversation about it signed it. I gathered 30 signatures from people who are super on the left and super on the right. This is a checkbook issue; this is not a right-leaning or left-leaning issue."

A recommendation to toll all lanes of Interstate 5 between Northeast Going/Alberta Street to Southwest Multnomah Boulevard and the Abernethy Bridge on Interstate 205 has stirred strong feelings on both sides of the issues.

Parrish's district is in the heart of the proposed tolls. Her district spans from Tualatin in the I-5 corridor to Lake Oswego in the I-205 area.

"I'm opposed to tolling lanes taxpayers have already paid for," Parrish said.

The Oregon Transportation Commission will begin deliberating later this month on what plan they would like to submit to the Federal Highway Administration.

Initiative Petition 10 could significantly slow or stop that plan.

"This is about the practicality of living in a community where we are going to be severely impacted by tolls on existing infrastructure," Parrish said. "This cuts way across political lines."