2017 Washington State Legislative Priorities

  • Urge compliance with the McCleary decision through the levying of a state capital gains tax, the repeal of tax breaks not in the public interest, and the adoption of a tax expenditure budget;
  • Lay the groundwork for the repeal of Tim Eyman’s draconian, destructive I-747 and the implementation of a homestead exemption or other property tax reform;
  • Bring greater transparency to Washington’s initiative process by supporting legislation that subjects the paid petitioning industry to oversight and accountability;
  • Protect our environment and mitigate damage to our climate by advocating for:
    • investments in infrastructure to address toxic runoff,
    • funding to empower the University of Washington to research climate impacts;
    • new policies to protect fisheries against recreational mining;
    • credits and incentives to accelerate deployment of solar energy.

Ballot Measure Endorsements for 2017

Washington (statewide measures gathering signatures)

Statehouse Bill Tracker

A tool for monitoring the Washington State Legislature

The Statehouse Bill Tracker is an NPI project that makes tracking priority legislation simple and easy. The Tracker aggregates feeds for bills “with legs”, providing an up-to-date view of what’s moving in the statehouse at any given time during session. Bills are sorted by activity. The most recently active bills appear at the top and the least active bills appear at the bottom.

When something happens to a bill, we call that an action.

An action could be a bill’s introduction, public hearing in committee, vote on the floor, proposed amendment, or referral to another committee; all these are examples of steps in the legislative process. (See this page for a visual explanation of how a bill becomes a law). Actions affect the placement of bills in the tracker. Here’s a longer explanation:

  1. Bills are sorted in reverse chronological order. The most active bills will always appear at the top. Bills with little activity will sink to the bottom like a heavy stone settling at the bottom of a creek bed after being washed downstream by a flood.
  2. A green dot next to a bill number update indicates the bill reflects progressive values and enjoys our support. Conversely, red octagon (stop sign) indicates that we oppose the bill because it would implement policies that are contrary to progressive values. Finally, a yellow triangle means we have concerns about a bill, but are not working for its defeat.
  3. Assessments of bills are provided by NPI and organizations that we work with, such as the Washington State Labor Council or the Environmental Priorities Coalition. The person/entity that analyzed the bill and provided the wording is always listed to the left of the assessment.
  4. It is possible to view a bill’s full history without clicking away, as long as JavaScript is enabled. Simply click on the blue link that says “Click to view” and the bill history will slide out for easy viewing. (It can be hidden again using the same link, which will change to say “Click to hide”). If JavaScript is not enabled, the bill history may still be viewed, either by clicking the bill number to go to the Legislature’s website or by viewing the source of this page.

Now, let’s find out what’s moving in the statehouse!

House Bill 1371 (Revises Distracted Driving Rules)

Official Description: Modifying the infraction of and penalties for distracted driving.
Current Status: (March 29, 2017) Scheduled for executive session in the Senate Committee on Transportation at 3:30 PM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Farrell
Cosponsors: Lovick, Haler, Harris, Clibborn, Orwall, Kagi, Robinson, Appleton, Ryu, Goodman, Tarleton, Gregerson, Sells, Ormsby, Cody
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1371 "replaces current laws that prohibit use of a hand-held cellular phone and texting while driving with a prohibition on a driver using a personal electronic device with his or her hands while driving to conduct a range of activities," explains its original bill report. Exceptions are retained -- for calling 911, for operating ham radios, and for minimally manipulating touchscreens on vehicle control panels.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1504 (Permits Farmland Destruction)

Official Description: Concerning rail dependent uses for purposes of the growth management act and related development regulations.
Current Status: (March 28, 2017 - LGOV) Majority; do pass with amendment(s).
Prime Sponsor: Pike
Cosponsors: Blake, Wylie, Peterson, Harris, Vick, Manweller, Tarleton, Orcutt, Farrell, Haler, Dent, Fey, Sells, Kraft, Johnson, MacEwen, Chandler, Stambaugh, Van Werven, Dye, Doglio, Springer
Our Position: NPI opposes this bill.
Assessment by NPI: "This bill is aimed at currently protected farmland in Clark County that is adjacent to a railroad, but would also allow it statewide," assesses NPI ally Futurewise. "Clark County has a thriving agricultural industry, farm-related income is up 41 percent from 2007 through 2012 accounting for $5.98 million of income. This would increase the pressures on neighboring farms and further the loss of productive farmland. Not only will this bill allow freight-related industrial development in these areas, but allowing industrial uses outside cities and towns will significantly impact the value and viability of industrial lands in places where they do belong."
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1508 (Washington Kids Ready to Learn Act)

Official Description: Promoting student health and readiness through meal and nutrition programs.
Current Status: (March 28, 2017) Referred to Ways & Means.
Prime Sponsor: Stonier
Cosponsors: Dolan, Ortiz-Self, Riccelli, Orwall, Peterson, Sawyer, Doglio, Gregerson, Slatter, Frame, Macri, Bergquist, Senn, Ryu, Kloba, Stanford, Sells, Farrell, Lovick, McBride, Pollet, Hudgins, Jinkins, Kagi, Appleton, Goodman, Tharinger, Clibborn, Ormsby, Cody, Santos, Fey, Pettigrew
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: "Breakfast After the Bell offers nutritious meals to students without interrupting instructional time," explains Andy McVicar on behalf of the House Democratic caucus. "Breakfast programs for low-income children are reimbursed in part or full by the federal government, and currently have low utilization rates. Breakfast After the Bell is expected to increase participation in those existing programs. By moving breakfast after the bell, instead of before, students will receive a healthy meal without having to stand in line and miss instructional opportunities."
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1541 (Prescription Drug Pricing Accountability)

Official Description: Addressing prescription drug cost transparency.
Current Status: (March 27, 2017) Scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Health Care at 10:00 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Robinson
Cosponsors: Johnson, Harris, McBride, Doglio, Wylie, Peterson, Cody, Stonier, Frame, Sawyer, Macri, Sells, Orwall, Jinkins, Senn, Tharinger, Stanford, Riccelli, Fitzgibbon, Ormsby, Gregerson, Hudgins, Ortiz-Self, Ryu, Farrell, Tarleton, Pollet, Clibborn, Fey, Kilduff, Reeves, Kagi, Chapman, Pellicciotti, Bergquist, Goodman, Lovick, Slatter
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: 2SHB 1541 "would improve regulation, transparency and accountability on prescription drug pricing," notes the Washington State Labor Council. "The bill is supported by the Healthy Washington Coalition of community organizations, labor unions, health plans, faith based groups, patient groups, and provider associations."
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5289 (Revises Distracted Driving Rules)

Official Description: Modifying the infraction of and penalties for distracted driving.
Current Status: (March 23, 2017) Scheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Transportation at 3:30 PM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Rivers
Cosponsors: Liias, Miloscia, Carlyle, Kuderer
Our Position: NPI has concerns about this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SB 5289 "creates a new traffic infraction, beginning January 1, 2018, that prohibits a person from using a personal electronic device while driving a motor vehicle on a public highway." Its House companion is more polished and preferred by NPI to this bill.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5333 (Kim Wyman's wishlist of presidential primary changes)

Official Description: Modifying presidential primary provisions.
Current Status: (March 22, 2017) Scheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on State Government, Elections & Information Technology at 1:30 PM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Miloscia
Cosponsors: Liias, Zeiger, Pearson
Our Position: NPI opposes this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SB 5333 would move up the default date of Washington State's presidential primary from May to March and create a "straw poll" ballot listing all the names of the presidential candidates that would be confusing and totally meaningless. NPI supports moving up the default date of the primary, but cannot support the straw ballot idea, and therefore opposes this bill.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1800 (Washington Voting Rights Act)

Official Description: Enacting the Washington voting rights act.
Current Status: (March 22, 2017) Scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on State Government at 8:00 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Gregerson
Cosponsors: Hudgins, Ortiz-Self, Peterson, Orwall, Springer, Lovick, Sells, Stonier, Clibborn, Dolan, McBride, Ryu, Goodman, Macri, Senn, Cody, Hansen, Bergquist, Slatter, Frame, Sawyer, Kloba, Stanford, Pollet, Doglio, Robinson, Wylie, Kagi, Jinkins, Sullivan, Appleton, Fitzgibbon, Ormsby, Reeves, Morris, Tharinger, Fey, Pellicciotti, Pettigrew, Haler, Kilduff, Farrell
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1500 is the latest incarnation of the state-level Voting Rights Act that has been introduced in the Legislature for several consecutive cycles, but repeatedly stymied by Senate Republicans. It would allow members of a protected class (race, color, or community of speakers of a particular language) to file a lawsuit to modify the electoral map in their geographic location if it is shown to consistently be unrepresentative of the population. We know this works: Federally-ordered districting in Yakima produced a city council much more representative of the population. Other Washington cities would also benefit from electoral reform.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1234 (Pregnancy Prevention Reimbursement)

Official Description: Addressing private health plan coverage of contraceptives.
Current Status: (March 21, 2017) Passed to Rules Committee for second reading.
Prime Sponsor: Robinson
Cosponsors: Lytton, Senn, Frame, Doglio, Tarleton, Hansen, Jinkins, Cody, Ortiz-Self, Riccelli, Stambaugh, Macri, Pollet, Tharinger, Clibborn, Stonier, Caldier, Sells, Gregerson, Wylie, Kilduff, McBride, Goodman, Bergquist, Ormsby, Stanford, Slatter, Kloba
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1234 requires that health plans that cover pregnancy prevention drugs reimburse a twelve-month refill of contraceptives obtained at one time. Expanding access to pregnancy prevention is an important means of improving women's reproductive health and is a policy direction NPI strongly supports.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1440 (Student Loan Bill of Rights)

Official Description: Establishing a student loan bill of rights.
Current Status: (March 21, 2017) Scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Higher Education at 8:00 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Stonier
Cosponsors: Stambaugh, Hudgins, Johnson, Ortiz-Self, Stokesbary, Sells, Jinkins, Ryu, Appleton, Pollet, Senn, Peterson, Kilduff, Bergquist, Stanford, Frame, Slatter, Dolan
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1440 would make it easier for students to obtain and afford a college education. It would create a student education loan ombudsman to help students who borrow money to pay for school if they have a problem with their lenders. It would bar loan servicers from engaging in deceptive lending practices, and commission a study to ascertain if the state can refinance student loans from tax-exempt bond proceeds.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1795 (Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council)

Official Description: Creating the Cooper Jones bicyclist safety advisory council.
Current Status: (March 20, 2017) Scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Transportation at 3:30 PM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Kloba
Cosponsors: Farrell, Stambaugh, Stokesbary, Fitzgibbon, Doglio, Stanford, McBride
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: EHB 1795 "establishes the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council (Bicyclist Council), to be convened by the Washington Traffic Safety Commission to review and analyze data related to bicycle fatalities and serious injuries to identify opportunities for safety improvements, and mandates that the Bicyclist Council meet at least quarterly," its engrossed bill report explains. Gathering and analyzing data to inform recommendations that would make roads safer for bicyclists is something we need to be doing.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5402 (Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council)

Official Description: Creating the Cooper Jones bicyclist safety advisory council.
Current Status: (March 20, 2017) Referred to Rules 2 Review.
Prime Sponsor: Liias
Cosponsors: Walsh, Billig, Hobbs, King, Sheldon
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SSB 5402, like its companion EHB 1795, "establishes the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council (Bicyclist Council), to be convened by the Washington Traffic Safety Commission to review and analyze data related to bicycle fatalities and serious injuries to identify opportunities for safety improvements, and mandates that the Bicyclist Council meet at least quarterly," its engrossed bill report explains. Gathering and analyzing data to inform recommendations that would make roads safer for bicyclists is something we need to be doing.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5091 (Updating the Utility Damage Prevention Act)

Official Description: Removing expiration dates, obsolete dates, and an outdated statutory reference from the enforcement provisions of the underground utility damage prevention act.
Current Status: (March 15, 2017) Referred to Rules 2 Review.
Prime Sponsor: Takko
Cosponsors: Rivers, Wellman
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SB 5091 is a housekeeping bill requested by the Utilities & Transportation Commission. As its official description states, it would remove obsolete dates and an outdated statutory reference from the enforcement provisions of the underground utility damage prevention act.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5023 (Delaying the "levy cliff")

Official Description: Delaying implementation of revisions to the school levy lid. (REVISED FOR ENGROSSED: Changing provisions relating to school district excess levies. )
Current Status: (March 15, 2017) Effective date 7/23/2017*.
Prime Sponsor: Wellman
Cosponsors: Rolfes, Nelson, McCoy, Carlyle, Frockt, Palumbo, Liias, Billig, Hunt, Keiser, Pedersen, Conway, Saldaña, Darneille, Hasegawa, Chase, Mullet, Kuderer
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: ESB 5023 will delay the so-called "levy cliff" for a year, preventing a sudden $500 million funding shortfall across Washington's hundreds of school districts. Without this bill, school districts would not have been allowed to collect as much money as they have in the past through local property tax levies starting in 2018. Districts are already doing their planning for next year and need the Legislature to act to save them from a manufactured crisis. ESB 5023 has cleared the House and Senate and now awaits executive action.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1646 (Pollution Tax)

Official Description: Promoting an equitable clean energy economy by creating a carbon tax that allows investment in clean energy, clean air, healthy forests, and Washington's communities.
Current Status: (March 14, 2017) Public hearing in the House Committee on Environment at 1:30 PM.
Prime Sponsor: Fitzgibbon
Cosponsors: Appleton, Fey, Goodman, McBride, Cody, Macri, Doglio, Pollet, Jinkins
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1646 would levy an escalating pollution tax on emissions from fossil fuels and production of electricity beginning in mid-2018 at a rate of $15 per ton of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions. Revenue raised would be be dedicated to helping displaced workers and investing in renewable energy and forest health projects.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1410 (Funding for Intercity Transit)

Official Description: Authorizing certain public transportation benefit areas to impose a sales and use tax increase approved by voters.
Current Status: (March 13, 2017) Referred to Rules 2 Consideration.
Prime Sponsor: Doglio
Cosponsors: Dolan, Fey, Farrell, Jinkins, Fitzgibbon, Pollet, Springer
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1410 would empower Intercity Transit to go to Thurston County voters with a proposition to increase sales tax revenue to fund needed service improvements. "Intercity Transit serves over 100,000 people," proponents noted in their testimony, as summarized by legislative staff. "Seventy-five percent of the budget [comes] from sales and use taxes. There has recently been a reduction in overall federal support, which undermines our ability to address capital needs, let alone put additional services on the street. The success of our comprehensive plan is dependent on a higher level of service than we can currently provide."
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 2145 (Aerospace Tax Break Accountability)

Official Description: Honoring the legislature's intent to create and retain local jobs through incentives provided to the aerospace industry by redirecting those incentives to other job creating opportunities if the number of aerospace jobs continue to decline.
Current Status: (March 10, 2017) First reading, referred to Finance (Not Officially read and referred until adoption of Introduction report).
Prime Sponsor: Frame
Cosponsors: Robinson, Farrell, Jinkins, Santos, Doglio, Macri, Dolan, Bergquist, Sells, Pollet, Sawyer, Wylie, Ryu, Appleton, Chapman, Gregerson, Cody, Kirby, Stonier, Riccelli, Fitzgibbon, Kloba, Peterson, Fey, Slatter, Tharinger, Stanford, Ortiz-Self, Orwall
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: "HB 2145 would reduce Boeing’s tax credit by half if the company’s employment in Washington drops below 70,000 jobs," explains The Washington State Labor Council. "The company gets no tax credit and pays the standard tax rate all other manufacturers pay if its employment drops below 67,500 jobs. Boeing currently employs 71,036 Washington workers, down from 83,295 in November 2013. Aerospace tax credits would remain in place if the job loss is due to a nationwide industry downturn."
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5475 (Tax exemption for nuclear reactors)

Official Description: Providing a business and occupation tax exemption for manufacturers of small modular reactors.
Current Status: (March 9, 2017) First reading, referred to Technology & Economic Development (Not Officially read and referred until adoption of Introduction report).
Prime Sponsor: Brown
Cosponsors: Baumgartner, Rivers, Takko, King, Sheldon, Bailey, Ericksen, Angel, Honeyford, Miloscia, Becker, Braun, Hobbs, Schoesler
Our Position: NPI opposes this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SB 5475 grants a tax exemption for building small nuclear reactors. But nuclear reactors are on the way out. They can’t get financed, which leaves states having to bear those costs. Given our education and mental health funding crises, we need to be very careful about extending any new tax exemptions, especially for "pie in the sky” projects.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5223 (Prohibits safe injection sites)

Official Description: Concerning safe injection sites in Washington state.
Current Status: (March 6, 2017) First reading, referred to Health Care & Wellness (Not Officially read and referred until adoption of Introduction report).
Prime Sponsor: Miloscia
Cosponsors: O'Ban, Becker
Our Position: NPI opposes this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SB 5223 is an inappropriate attempt by Republican Senator Mark Miloscia to block King County from opening up safe injection sites to help individuals who are struggling with drug addiction. The Seattle Public Defender Association and other organizations oppose this bill, as does NPI.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5001 (Sabotages Sound Transit)

Official Description: Modifying the election and authority of regional transit authority board members.
Current Status: (March 2, 2017) First reading, referred to Transportation (Not Officially read and referred until adoption of Introduction report).
Prime Sponsor: O'Ban
Cosponsors: Angel, Miloscia, Becker, Padden, Honeyford, King, Fortunato
Our Position: NPI opposes this bill.
Assessment by NPI: Substitute Senate Bill 5001 would wipe out Sound Transit’s federated board of city and county leadership and replace it with a panel of transportation czars elected from eleven newly drawn transportation districts in King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties. The anti-transit forces arrayed in support of SSB 5501 want this legislation to pass because it would give them a decent chance of taking control of the agency, its projects, and its revenue beginning in 2018.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1570 (Washington Housing Opportunities Act)

Official Description: Concerning access to homeless housing and assistance.
Current Status: (February 24, 2017) Referred to Rules 2 Review.
Prime Sponsor: Macri
Cosponsors: Robinson, McBride, Kagi, Sawyer, Tharinger, Doglio, Pollet, Ortiz-Self, Chapman, Cody, Jinkins, Bergquist, Hudgins, Peterson, Senn, Stonier, Riccelli, Frame, Gregerson, Dolan, Tarleton, Ormsby, Ryu, Fey, Fitzgibbon, Goodman, Slatter, Pettigrew, Kloba, Orwall, Appleton, Clibborn, Farrell, Stanford
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SHB 1570 would fight homelessness by allowing local governments to continue raising funds to expand access to housing. The bill is needed to prevent the loss of $70.5 million that would go towards combating homelessness in the 2019-2021 biennium. It is estimated that the loss of that money would result in 34,000 people becoming homeless again. The bill enjoys broad support from organizations like the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Association of Washington Cities.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1843 (House Democrats' McCleary compliance plan)

Official Description: Fulfilling the state's paramount duty for all children through equitable and responsible investments in the state's basic education program and reductions to local effort contributions.
Current Status: (February 23, 2017) First reading, referred to Ways & Means.
Prime Sponsor: Sullivan
Cosponsors: Lytton, Jinkins, Orwall, Appleton, Springer, Chapman, Tarleton, Tharinger, Goodman, Farrell, Macri, Ormsby, Fitzgibbon, Slatter, Hudgins, Doglio, Fey, Pollet, Ortiz-Self, Santos, McBride
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1843 is the updated House Democratic plan for complying with the Supreme Court's McCleary decision, which found the state was failing to amply provide for the education of all young people residing within its borders. The bill details what investments are needed to ensure K-12 schools are properly funded, including investments in professional pay. HB 1843 does not identify funding sources to make these investments possible; those will be identified in a subsequent, follow-on bill.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5019 (Prepaid Return Ballot Postage For All)

Official Description: Providing prepaid postage for primary and general election ballots.
Current Status: (February 9, 2017) Referred to Ways & Means.
Prime Sponsor: Hasegawa
Cosponsors: Palumbo, Hunt, Keiser, Pedersen, Conway, Wellman, Rolfes, Frockt
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SSB 5019 would require state government to reimburse counties for the cost of return postage on mail and absentee ballots for all elections, and mandate that return envelopes for all election ballots include prepaid postage. A recent pilot project conducted by King County Elections found that providing voters with prepaid return envelopes resulted in higher turnout. NPI strongly supports this bill.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5607 (Senate Republicans' levy swipe scheme)

Official Description: Concerning education.
Current Status: (February 6, 2017) Public hearing in the House Committee on Appropriations at 3:30 PM.
Prime Sponsor: Braun
Cosponsors: Rivers, Fain, Zeiger, Schoesler, Honeyford, Warnick, King, Brown, Angel, Wilson, Sheldon, Becker, Miloscia
Our Position: NPI opposes this bill.
Assessment by NPI: We call SSB 5607 a levy swipe scheme because it would change where existing dollars are coming from, but not result in any new investment in our schools, which is completely and totally unacceptable. It’s smoke and mirrors. If that weren’t bad enough, the bill is loaded with bad policy provisions. For example, at the end of Part I, in Sec. 106, there’s a number of subsections which are intended to ensure that taxpayer dollars are funneled into charter schools, even though the state Supreme Court has ruled that charter schools are unconstitutional.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1159 (Mandatory Cooling-Off Period)

Official Description: Concerning employment after public service in state government.
Current Status: (February 3, 2017) Referred to Rules 2 Review.
Prime Sponsor: Pellicciotti
Cosponsors: Haler, Sells, Pollet, Hudgins, Kilduff
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1159 would require top state officials to take a yearlong “cooling-off” period before they can become lobbyists. Former officials would also have to specify where they are taking a new job and declare if they are paid by an entity that does business with or lobbies the state Legislature and executive department officials.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1500 (Tax expenditure budget)

Official Description: Increasing tax exemption transparency and accountability.
Current Status: (January 31, 2017) Public hearing in the House Committee on Finance at 3:30 PM.
Prime Sponsor: Pollet
Cosponsors: Farrell, Appleton, Tarleton, Ryu, Wylie, Santos, Macri, Doglio, Jinkins, Orwall, Tharinger, Stonier, Kagi, Fitzgibbon, Kloba, Stanford, Bergquist, McBride, Ortiz-Self, Goodman, Dolan, Cody, Pettigrew, Riccelli, Sells, Hudgins, Kirby, Lovick, Frame, Peterson, Ormsby, Pellicciotti
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1500 would require Washington State to begin accounting for the revenue it gives up in the form of tax breaks and exemptions. When the state forgoes collecting revenue, it is actually spending money, and it would make sense to account for that as part of the budgeting process. HB 1500 is an NPI legislative priority for 2017.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2017 Regular Session (Click to view)