|Member of the Washington House of Representatives
from the 43rd district
|Preceded by||Pat Thibaudeau|
May 13, 1953 |
|Alma mater||University of Washington|
Frank Chopp is a Democratic member of the Washington House of Representatives, representing the 43rd district since 1995. He is the current Speaker of the House. His district covers the neighborhoods of Fremont, Wallingford, the University District and Madison Park, all in Seattle.
Frank Chopp was born on May 13, 1953 in Bremerton, Washington. While still in high school in Bremerton, Chopp led a protest against the local Elks Club's refusal to allow black members. As a student at the University of Washington, he organized efforts to preserve low income housing in Seattle. He graduated from UW in 1975 Magna cum laude. He is married to Nancy Long and has two children.
Frank Chopp's in his early career focused on social services and education. After graduating at UW, Chopp became the Director, Cascade Community Center. In 1976, he became the manager of the North Community Service Center, Seattle Dept. of Human Resources. Then he spent two years as the Administrative Director if the Pike Market Senior Center. He came back to the North Community Service Center in 1981 as a manager for two more years. In 1983, Chopp became the longtime executive director of the Fremont Public Association (now known as Solid Ground), and later served as President of the organization. Since 2006, he has served as a Senior Advisor to Solid Ground.
In 1992-1995, he held a part-time lecturer position at the University of Washington Graduate School of Public Affairs.
Chopp was first elected to the House in 1994, and has been Speaker of the House since 2002. After two terms in office, he became House Democratic leader in 1998 From 1999-2002, he served as Co-Speaker of the House, as the Democrats and Republicans had equal numbers of members.
Chopp led the House Democratic Caucus in a successful effort to retake the majority after losing nearly thirty seats in the 1994 election. After two terms in office, he became House Democratic leader in 1998 In his first term as Democratic Leader, he led the Democrats from the minority into a tie, and then three years later, into the majority. Since retaking the majority by one vote in 2001, Chopp has presided over a steady increase of the Democratic majority, which stood at 61 members to 37 in 2009 (a decline of two Democratic seats since 2008).
In the 2007 session, he engineered the success of bills that expanded health care coverage for children of the poor, paid leave for parents, extended rights to gay and lesbian couples, and furthered the cleanup of Puget Sound.
In 2009, three separate bills were introduced to address protection of homeowners from faulty home construction: Senator Rodney Tom’s SB 5895, Representative Brendan Williams’ HB 1045, and Representative Larry Springer’s HB 1393. Each bill offered a similar approach to tackling the problem of faulty home construction, with minor variations. All bills had strong opposition from the Building Industry Association of Washington and support from the Trial Lawyers Association. The Senate passed Senator Tom’s bill but the House did not concur with the bill.
Critics in the House argue that the proposed warranty would be imposed on every homeowner contract, even if it works against the wishes of the homebuyer. Under the proposal, homebuyers would be barred from choosing a different warranty or voluntarily establishing their own guarantee terms with the builder. The mandated warranty still would apply when the home is sold, even if the new owner doesn't want it. The opponents of the bill also argued that the threat of more litigation would mean higher liability insurance premiums for architects, engineers, builders, general contractors and subcontractors.
There are currently protections for consumers in contract disputes. The Better Business Bureau, the Attorney General's Office and the Department of Labor and Industries all have programs to promote good contractors and weed out bad ones. In addition, builders are required by law to have insurance that pays customers if the company fails to fulfill the terms of its agreements.
In the 2010 session, he led the House Democratic Caucus to repeal I-960 to preserve funding for public safety, K-12 education, and vital social service programs. While facing the worst recession in recent history, the legislature balanced the budget through a balanced approach of closing tax loopholes on out of state businesses, cuts to state programs, and targeted tax increases on non-essential consumer goods in lieu of a general sales tax. http://housedemocrats.wa.gov/Budget_Mythbuster.pdf
- "Representative Frank V. Chopp (WA)". votesmart.org. Retrieved 2009-12-09.
- "Rep. Frank Chopp, serving the 43rd District". HouseDemocrats.wa.gov. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Andrew Garber (2006-07-23). "Chopp melds strategy, clout as he leads battle for House". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2009-12-09.
- Andrew Garber (2006-07-23). "Chopp melds strategy, clout as he leads battle for House". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Cory McConnell (1998-11-25). "U-District representative co-speaker of state House". Daily UW. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Austin Jenkins (2007-04-03), Frank Chopp breaks radio silence, Crosscut.com, retrieved 2009-12-15
- House Members by District, State of Washington, retrieved 2009-12-15
- Aimee Curl (2007-08-07). "Frank Chopp Steers the Democrats’ Political Bulldozer in Olympia". Seattle Weekly. Retrieved 2009-12-15.
- Rep. Frank Chopp official campaign website
- Follow the Money - Frank Chopp