Peter Abbarno begins term as new 20th District state representative

It's official! Rep. Peter Abbarno is now the new state representative serving the 20th Legislative District.

Due to COVID restrictions, Abbarno chose to take the oath of office early, being sworn-in last Wednesday, Jan. 6, at the Lewis County Courthouse by Superior Court Judge James Lawler. However, Abbarno's term in office officially began today (Monday, Jan. 11), the first day of the 2021 legislative session.

“It is one of the greatest honors of my life to be chosen by the citizens of the 20th District to serve as their state representative. I'm dedicated to working for a better future for our communities and our children,” said Abbarno, R-Centralia, the father of two. “I'm going to Olympia as a husband, a father, and as someone who deeply cares about our communities, to address kitchen table issues — those issues that matter to all of us, such as creating good jobs and securing a quality education for all of our children.”

Abbarno was elected in November with nearly 71 percent of the vote to the District 20, Position 1 seat that had been held for many years by Rep. Richard DeBolt, who chose not to run for re-election.

Abbarno has already hit the ground running, co-sponsoring House Bill 1055 with Rep. April Berg, D-Mill Creek, which extends the expiration date for reporting requirements on timber purchases. A public hearing is scheduled on the bill Wednesday in the House Rural Development, Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. He notes it will be important to collaborate with legislators on both sides of the aisle to effectively get things done for his district.

“Citizens in the 20th District elected me to fight for everyone and find solutions, not choose winners or losers, or limit my legislative efforts. My strategy will be to listen to the needs of our entire district, and use my experience in local government, as a small business owner, an attorney, and a family man, to advocate for real solutions for my neighbors and our local communities,” said Abbarno.

Abbarno was recently appointed as assistant ranking member of the House Capital Budget Committee. He will also serve on the House Environment and Energy Committee and the House Civil Rights and Judiciary Committee.

“The committees provide a real opportunity to make immediate impacts on policies and projects in our district,” said Abbarno. “Our community has seen amazing benefits from the capital budget, such as school STEM buildings, flood mitigation, and job-creating infrastructure. I am looking forward to helping create more opportunities for working families and businesses.”

Abbarno is an attorney and partner with a law firm in Centralia. He served five years on the Centralia City Council and is an active community volunteer. He and his wife, Holly, have two children and live in Centralia.

The 2021 legislative session is scheduled for 105 days to last through April 25. Due to the pandemic, committee meetings and floor sessions will be largely conducted virtually online.


Washington State House Republican Communications