Advocacy

Welcome to NPI’s Advocacy page. Here, you can find our advocacy campaigns, legislative priorities, and Statehouse Bill Tracker, a tool for keeping tabs on what is happening under the dome in the Washington State Capitol. Not familiar with our work? Learn more about NPI and what we do.

Legislative Priorities for 2023

The Northwest Progressive Institute’s 2023 Washington State legislative priorities are:

  • Strengthen our democracy by abolishing Tim Eyman’s push polls (“advisory votes”), empowering cities to move their elections to even years, providing public funding for campaigns, increasing transparency of expenditures intended to influence legislation, and updating our public disclosure laws;
  • Build a more progressive tax code by levying a wealth tax on billionaire fortunes, expanding the estate tax, improving the Working Families Tax Credit, and enacting a homestead exemption and renter’s credit to help low and middle income-families;
  • Increase funding for attainable and affordable housing, prioritize the density of new development near public transit to reduce car usage, and require trees near new housing to reduce air pollution and heat island impacts;
  • Improve sustainability by wisely investing Climate Commitment Act revenue, investing in salmon habitat to protect fish and our critically endangered orcas, passing the Washington Recycling and Packaging Act, adopting right to repair, and requiring all counties to include climate resiliency in their Growth Management Act planning;
  • Uphold the state’s paramount duty by dedicating additional resources to special education, school nurses, K-12 libraries, and music programs, along with more grant funding to empower districts to retrofit or replace seismically vulnerable structures;
  • Protect reproductive rights by empowering the attorney general to block hospital mergers if they jeopardize access to abortion care, indemnify companies based in Washington that help employees in other states get abortions, and advance a constitutional amendment to recognize Washingtonians’ family planning rights;
  • Create safer communities by banning military style assault weapons and equipping local governments with the tools needed to send unarmed first responders trained to address behavorial health crises to aid mentally ill individuals disturbing the peace;
  • Enhance equity and social justice by addressing the alarming rise of hate crimes, repealing the ban on affirmative action, abolishing the death penalty, and requiring proposed legislation to be reviewed through an equity lens.

Statehouse Bill Tracker

A tool for monitoring the Washington State Legislature

Introduction: 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!

Browse Active Legislation

House Bill 1392 (Fair Repair Act, also known as Right to Repair)

Official Description: Promoting the fair servicing and repair of digital electronic equipment.
Current Status: (February 10, 2023) Scheduled for executive session in the House Committee on Consumer Protection & Business at 8:00 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Gregerson
Cosponsors: Kretz, Ryu, Dent, Berry, Fitzgibbon, Reed, Ramel, Pollet, Macri
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: This legislation is the 2023 iteration of the right to repair legislation that Representative Mia Gregerson has been championing for several years, which NPI's research has found strong support for. It requires digital electronic equipment manufacturers to make available, on fair and reasonable terms, any parts, tools, and documentation required for the diagnosis, maintenance, or repair of that equipment as well as parts.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5199 (Exempting Local Journalism from B&O Tax)

Official Description: Providing tax relief for newspaper publishers.
Current Status: (February 6, 2023) Scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Ways & Means at 4:00 PM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Mullet
Cosponsors: Conway, Dozier, Holy, Keiser, Lovelett, Nguyen, Shewmake, Valdez
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: This legislation, requested by Attorney General Bob Ferguson, would help media businesses remain going concerns during a challenging time for the news business. The office explains: "Newspapers currently pay a reduced B&O tax rate, but that preferential tax rate expires in July of 2024. Consistent with the Legislative Auditor’s recommendation, Senate Bill 5199/House Bill 1206 expands the preference to fully eliminate the B&O tax for newspaper publishers and printers. This legislation also extends the same rate to exclusively online news outlets that provide a similar public benefit as printed papers." At NPI, we are strong advocates for a fair and just tax code, and have lobbied for an end to an unnecessary, unjustified tax exemptions and tax preferences. This is an example of a preference that we believe is in the public interest -- because it has the potential to help businesses that perform an essential service that Washingtonians need.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1078 (State Preemption of Urban Forestry Ordinances)

Official Description: Concerning urban forest management ordinances.
Current Status: (January 25, 2023) Scheduled for executive session in the House Committee on Local Government at 8:00 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Duerr
Cosponsors: Doglio, Simmons, Reed, Ryu, Walen, Ramel, Macri, Reeves, Kloba
Our Position: NPI has concerns about this bill.
Assessment by NPI: This legislation "requires any city or town that has or that enacts an urban forestry management ordinance to allow for any tree protection or management obligations imposed by the ordinance to be satisfied by the use of a tree bank," according to its nonpartisan staff analysis. NPI is concerned that the bill as initially written would weaken tree protection ordinances across the state, allowing developers to clearcut lots by paying a fee to participate in a tree bank. NPI is requesting amendments so that this legislation can be a vehicle for protecting trees rather than potentially jeopardizing our tree canopy further.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1178 (Allowing Local Governments to Pass Gun Safety Laws)

Official Description: Concerning local government authority to regulate firearms.
Current Status: (February 3, 2023) Scheduled for executive session in the House Committee on Civil Rights & Judiciary at 10:30 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Hackney
Cosponsors: Leavitt, Reed, Berry, Walen, Bateman, Ramel, Callan, Doglio, Macri, Duerr, Bergquist, Pollet, Santos, Ormsby
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: As summarized by nonpartisan staff, HB 1178 would do three things: (1) "Repeals the statute that preempts local jurisdictions from adopting laws relating to firearms," (2) "Provides that nothing in the chapter of law governing firearms modifies or limits the power of a city, municipality, or county to adopt laws relating to firearms that are in addition to or more restrictive than state law," and (3) "Removes the provisions that limit local regulation of firearms." These statutory changes would allow cities and counties to pass strong gun safety bills to protect more people from the scourge of gun violence.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1174 (Removing Barriers to Voting from Jail)

Official Description: Improving access and removing barriers to jail-based voting.
Current Status: (February 2, 2023) Referred to Appropriations.
Prime Sponsor: Simmons
Cosponsors: Farivar, Reed, Street, Bateman, Ramel, Macri, Reeves, Lekanoff, Davis, Ormsby
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: This legislation, offered by Tarra Simmons, the first formerly incarcerated state legislator in the country, is aimed at removing barriers to voting. Caucus staff explain that it "requires jails to provide incarcerated people with access to voter registration information and access to a ballot at least 18 days before an election. It also requires each county auditor’s office to designate a jail voting coordinator as well as each jail to designate an employee as its jail voting coordinator. County auditors would be required to create a jail voting plan in coordination with the jail voting coordinator and the Office of the Secretary of State for every jail in the county."
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5257 (School Recess for All WA Public Students)

Official Description: Ensuring elementary school students receive sufficient daily recess.
Current Status: (February 2, 2023) Passed to Rules Committee for second reading.
Prime Sponsor: Nobles
Cosponsors: Wilson, C., Billig, Cleveland, Dozier, Frame, Hasegawa, Hunt, Liias, Lovelett, Lovick, Nguyen, Saldaña, Valdez, Wellman
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: "Senate Bill 5257 would ensure sufficient daily recess in Washington State and help end the outdated practice of withholding recess, which disproportionately affects students of color and those with disabilities," explains Linnea Westerlind. NPI agrees and strongly supports this bill to improve the health of students in Washington's K-12 public schools.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1337 (Preempting Local Regulations for Backyard Cottages)

Official Description: Expanding housing options by easing barriers to the construction and use of accessory dwelling units.
Current Status: (February 2, 2023) Minority; without recommendation.
Prime Sponsor: Gregerson
Cosponsors: Barkis, Berry, Christian, Duerr, Fitzgibbon, Taylor, Ramel, Reeves, Simmons, Walen, Graham, Bateman, Reed, Lekanoff, Doglio, Tharinger, Cortes, Macri, Stonier
Our Position: NPI has concerns about this bill.
Assessment by NPI: NPI supports the intent of this bill, but has concerns about some of the specific provisions, namely the language in Section 4 that declares: "A city or county may not impose setback requirements, yard coverage limits, tree retention mandates, restrictions on entry door locations, aesthetic requirements, or requirements for design review for accessory dwelling units that are more restrictive than those for principal units." This language could have the effect of weakening tree protection rules and other regulations created to require responsible development and promote livable communities.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Joint Resolution 8202 (Protecting Reproductive Freedom in the Constitution)

Official Description: Amending the Constitution to address reproductive freedom.
Current Status: (February 1, 2023) Passed to Rules Committee for second reading.
Prime Sponsor: Keiser
Cosponsors: Kuderer
Our Position: NPI supports this joint resolution.
Assessment by NPI: This proposed constitutional amendment would protect Washingtonians' reproductive freedom decisions, including the "the individual's fundamental right to choose to have an abortion and the individual's fundamental right to choose to use contraception."
Weigh in: Comment on this joint resolution using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1340 (Safe Haven for Abortion Access)

Official Description: Concerning actions by health professions disciplining authorities against license applicants and license holders.
Current Status: (January 31, 2023) Referred to Rules 2 Review.
Prime Sponsor: Riccelli
Cosponsors: Thai, Berry, Ormsby, Chopp, Macri, Bergquist, Bateman, Simmons, Stonier, Berg, Duerr, Wylie, Senn, Taylor, Fitzgibbon, Cortes, Goodman, Reed, Lekanoff
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: As summarized by Democratic caucus staff, this legislation "ensures that health providers can’t be disciplined or have their license denied for 'unprofessional conduct' if that was the result of providing reproductive health services or gender affirming care in accordance with Washington state law, regardless of where the patient resides." This is the House version.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1240 (Assault Weapons Ban)

Official Description: Establishing firearms-related safety measures to increase public safety.
Current Status: (January 31, 2023) Referred to Rules 2 Review.
Prime Sponsor: Peterson
Cosponsors: Senn, Alvarado, Walen, Street, Springer, Simmons, Reeves, Reed, Ormsby, Kloba, Fitzgibbon, Duerr, Doglio, Berry, Bateman, Fey, Davis, Ramel, Bergquist, Fosse, Pollet, Lekanoff, Macri, Gregerson, Santos
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: House Bill 1240 would prohibit the manufacture, importation, distribution, sale, or offer for sale of any assault weapon, subject to various exceptions for licensed firearm manufacturers and dealers, and for individuals who inherit an assault weapon. This is the House version of legislation requested by Attorney General Bob Ferguson, which NPI's polling shows a majority of Washingtonians strongly support.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5047 (Washington Voting Rights Act Updates)

Official Description: Enhancing the Washington voting rights act.
Current Status: (January 30, 2023) Passed to Rules Committee for second reading.
Prime Sponsor: Saldaña
Cosponsors: Trudeau, Nguyen, Wilson, C., Dhingra
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: This bill would update language in several sections of the Washington Voting Rights Act as well as add new provisions that give courts more direction for resolving future lawsuits filed under the WVRA, including an ability for people and organizations that bring a voting rights action to obtain reimbursement for research costs they incur in litigating voting justice for a particular local jurisdiction.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5241 (Keep Our Care Act)

Official Description: Concerning material changes to the operations and governance structure of participants in the health care marketplace.
Current Status: (January 26, 2023) Scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Law & Justice at 8:00 AM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Randall
Cosponsors: Rolfes, Kuderer, Trudeau, Pedersen, Shewmake, Hunt, Saldaña, Kauffman, Valdez, Lovick, Robinson, Lovelett, Liias, Frame, Nguyen, Stanford, Wilson, C.
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: Proposed by Deputy Majority Leader Emily Randall, SB 5241 "prohibits hospitals from merging if the consolidation diminishes patients’ access to services — including reproductive, end-of-life and gender-affirming care — by creating a system of public oversight that ensures people’s needs are prioritized over corporate growth. If passed, it would only apply to future consolidations that receive authorization from the state attorney general," as summarized by Democratic caucus staff.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5082 (Repealing and Replacing "Advisory Votes")

Official Description: Encouraging electoral participation and making ballots more meaningful by abolishing advisory votes.
Current Status: (January 25, 2023) Placed on second reading by Rules Committee.
Prime Sponsor: Kuderer
Cosponsors: Hunt
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: SB 5082 would repeal part of an old Tim Eyman initiative that forces Washington's thirty-nine counties to waste precious resources on "advisory votes" -- fake ballot measures that falsely purport to give voters an opportunity to weigh in on revenue increases passed by the Legislature. Advisory votes -- which are really anti-tax messages written by Eyman and thus do not measure anything -- are costly, deceptive, and unconstitutional, and NPI strongly supports getting rid of them. The bill would also increase transparency of the Legislature by requiring more information about the Legislature's fiscal decisions to be published online, with access instructions offered in the voter's pamphlet. Adoption of this legislation is a top NPI legislative priority for 2023. This is the Senate version.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

House Bill 1158 (Repealing and Replacing "Advisory Votes")

Official Description: Encouraging electoral participation and making ballots more meaningful by abolishing advisory votes.
Current Status: (January 18, 2023) Scheduled for executive session in the House Committee on State Government & Tribal Relations at 1:30 PM (Subject to change).
Prime Sponsor: Walen
Cosponsors: Reed, Peterson, Fitzgibbon, Taylor, Berry, Bateman, Ramel, Slatter, Macri, Simmons, Reeves, Duerr, Gregerson, Thai, Wylie, Stonier, Pollet, Santos, Fosse, Ormsby, Tharinger
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: HB 1158 would repeal part of an old Tim Eyman initiative that forces Washington's thirty-nine counties to waste precious resources on "advisory votes" -- fake ballot measures that falsely purport to give voters an opportunity to weigh in on revenue increases passed by the Legislature. Advisory votes -- which are really anti-tax messages written by Eyman and thus do not measure anything -- are costly, deceptive, and unconstitutional, and NPI strongly supports getting rid of them. The bill would also increase transparency of the Legislature by requiring more information about the Legislature's fiscal decisions to be published online, with access instructions offered in the voter's pamphlet. Adoption of this legislation is a top NPI legislative priority for 2023. This is the House version.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5446 (Allowing Local Governments to Pass Gun Safety Laws)

Official Description: Concerning local government authority to regulate firearms.
Current Status: (January 18, 2023) First reading, referred to Law & Justice.
Prime Sponsor: Nguyen
Cosponsors: Frame, Keiser, Kuderer, Liias, Lovelett, Saldaña, Trudeau, Valdez
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: As summarized by nonpartisan staff in the House, SB 5446 would do three things: (1) "Repeals the statute that preempts local jurisdictions from adopting laws relating to firearms," (2) "Provides that nothing in the chapter of law governing firearms modifies or limits the power of a city, municipality, or county to adopt laws relating to firearms that are in addition to or more restrictive than state law," and (3) "Removes the provisions that limit local regulation of firearms." These statutory changes would allow cities and counties to pass strong gun safety bills to protect more people from the scourge of gun violence.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5400 (Safe Haven for Abortion Access)

Official Description: Concerning actions by health professions disciplining authorities against license applicants and license holders.
Current Status: (January 16, 2023) First reading, referred to Health & Long Term Care.
Prime Sponsor: Salomon
Cosponsors: Saldaña, Kuderer, Rolfes, Randall
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: As summarized by Democratic caucus staff, this legislation "ensures that health providers can’t be disciplined or have their license denied for 'unprofessional conduct' if that was the result of providing reproductive health services or gender affirming care in accordance with Washington state law, regardless of where the patient resides." This is the Senate version.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)

Senate Bill 5265 (Assault Weapons Ban)

Official Description: Establishing firearms-related safety measures to increase public safety.
Current Status: (January 11, 2023) First reading, referred to Law & Justice.
Prime Sponsor: Kuderer
Cosponsors: Valdez, Cleveland, Dhingra, Hunt, Liias, Nguyen, Nobles, Pedersen, Saldaña, Salomon, Stanford, Trudeau, Wellman, Wilson, C.
Our Position: NPI supports this bill.
Assessment by NPI: House Bill 1240 would prohibit the manufacture, importation, distribution, sale, or offer for sale of any assault weapon, subject to various exceptions for licensed firearm manufacturers and dealers, and for individuals who inherit an assault weapon. This is the Senate version of legislation requested by Attorney General Bob Ferguson, which NPI's polling shows a majority of Washingtonians strongly support.
Weigh in: Comment on this bill using the Legislature’s new bill commenting tool.

View full bill history for 2023 Regular Session (Click to view)