The Legislature’s fiscal committees have been the focus of attention for the last several days, with the cutoff to move bills from Appropriations, Ways and Means, Capital Budget, and Finance on Tuesday. With extremely limited time to hear bills, it is clear that this cutoff will be even more impactful than last week’s policy committee cut-off. The House and Senate will be shifting focus to floor action after Tuesday, and are scheduled to work over the weekend.

Many bills that would have contributed significantly to county fiscal sustainability will not survive after this week. Budget writers will be using most if not all of the available revenue, including projected revenue increases, to maintain existing state programs. The Legislature has been clear that the priority for any new funding is not on services provided by counties. We do not expect a significant change in direction this year.

The WSAC Legislative Steering Committee will be holding its second webinar of the session this Friday afternoon. WSAC staff will update members on the status of bills, including which bills did not survive recent cutoffs.

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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