There are only 10 business days for legislative policy committees to hear and move bills before the first committee cutoff. The closer we get to this cutoff, the more hectic the pace becomes. WSAC will be covering dozens of hearings this week. 

The House Appropriations Committee will be considering legislation supported by WSAC last year; HB 2006 (Koster) provides additional flexibility for counties with three existing revenue options. We are pleased to see the House pick this measure up again.

We are also pleased that the House Judiciary Committee will be considering legislation to increase the state’s contribution to county indigent defense costs – HB 2687 (Frame). WSAC Executive Director, Eric Johnson, will be presenting supportive testimony on Wednesday morning for this measure.

The House Local Government Committee is hearing legislation (HB 2737 – Appleton) that commissions a study comparing local government revenue capacity and responsibilities. We feel this is an important building block for continuing to make our case for County Fiscal Sustainability. 

On Friday of this week, the WSAC Legislative Steering Committee will hold its first webinar of the session, where WSAC staff will update members on the status of bills we’re tracking. We were fortunate to have Senate Majority Leader Sharon Nelson and Governor Inslee’s chief budget writer, David Schumacher, join us at last week’s LSC meeting.

Special thanks to Mr. Schumacher and Sen. Nelson for taking the time to meet with our members!

Josh Weiss started working in Olympia in 1998 and in addition to spending the last 8 years at WSAC, has served as nonpartisan counsel to the House of Representatives, Legislative Director for the Department of Fish and Wildlife, and Environmental Policy Director for the Washington Forest Protection Association representing private forest landowners. Josh is a graduate of Central Washington University and the Vermont Law School, and is a fourth generation Washingtonian.

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