Dear friends and neighbors,

The 2024 legislative session has begun, and we have just 60 days to act on legislation on all the important issues facing our state. I’m excited to work with my seatmates in the House, Rep. Liz Berry and Rep. Julia Reed, to serve you and pass into law the policies that families in our district and across Washington need.

In this e-newsletter I’ll touch on some of the issues I plan to work on while also inviting you to share feedback with me on your priorities for this year.

Juvenile justice

I’ve never shied away from tough issues, but juvenile justice is one of the toughest I’ve worked on in my legislative career. Everyone wants to ensure public safety, but to do that effectively we need to look at the data on how we stop crime from happening in a thoughtful, compassionate way. The fact is, we’ve got a bunch of young people caught up in our criminal legal system right now, and it’s imperative we make sure that the system is working in a way that helps them get their lives back on track.

Unfortunately, too much of our criminal legal system right now is focused on punishment for the sake of punishment. But if you take a 15-year-old kid who made a terrible mistake, put them in prison for a decade and leave it at that, they aren’t going to come out with the relationships and skills they need to become productive members of society. We know that teenage brains have barely begun to develop and mature, and that helping these kids get better is more compassionate and more effective for public safety than writing them off before they’re even in their 20s. If we want to prevent crime, homelessness, and drug addiction, we need to make sure we’re intervening in these children’s lives in a way that’s productive and helpful, not needlessly punitive and costly.

There are many ways to make our system work better. I’ve been working with experts in juvenile justice and had the chance to talk with many of these kids, and we’re preparing legislation to help kids get back on course. I’ll provide more information as this legislation moves through the Legislature.

Affordable housing

Affordable housing is another great challenge facing people in communities across our state. To put it simply, we need about 1.1 million new homes built in Washington state over the next 20 years. And importantly, about half of those homes need to be affordable for people making less than 50% of the area’s median income – in Seattle, that means a family of four making less than about $68,500 a year.

Last year, we passed some important reforms to expand our housing supply and help build market rate housing for middleclass families. I’m proud of the work we did, and it’ll make a difference. But those reforms alone won’t solve the problem – we need to dramatically increase our investment to directly build housing that’s affordable for those people making less than median income. It’s almost impossible to get the market and private developers to build truly affordable housing that’s accessible to people who are on the edge of homelessness. To make the kind of difference we need, the state has got to do more.

At the same time, the best way to prevent homelessness is to keep people in their homes. I want to see us do more to provide stability and predictability for the 36% of Washingtonians who rent a home – that means more notice for rent increases and reasonable caps on how steep those increases can be.

Continuing our progress

I think you all know how passionate I am about fixing our upside-down tax code so we can make the investments we need in children’s education, services for people in need, affordable housing, and more. And I hear from you, my constituents, nearly every day about the need to fund education and keep our schools open, expand affordable childcare, combat the climate crisis, and so much more.

Sadly, there’s an unprecedented push this year to roll back the progress we’ve made over the past few years on all these issues.

Our capital gains tax on our wealthiest residents – those who make more than $250,000 a year just from the sale of stocks, bonds, and other financial assets – funds education and early learning. We can’t afford to lose these investments in our children, particularly at a time when we need to do even MORE to fix our upside-down tax code and make the investments in education, housing, and childcare that families need.

Likewise, the Climate Commitment Act is making transformative investments in energy efficiency, transit and electric vehicle infrastructure, protecting people from pollution, creating new good jobs in clean and green manufacturing industries, among other improvements. We can’t risk rolling back the progress we’ve begun to make!

I know our district wants to move Washington forward, not backward, on these issues. I plan to stand strong for our progress on combatting climate change, funding education, protecting seniors, and other key issues and to do even more.

Save the date for an in-person town hall!

If you’d like to talk with me and my seatmates in the House about the policies we’ll be working on this legislative session, we’ll have an opportunity to do that soon. We are confirming the final location, but I’d encourage you to save the date for an in-person town hall meeting on Saturday, Jan. 20. Once the location and time are set, we’ll send out a follow-up email confirming them for you, but I hope you’ll save the date for now.

If you can’t attend our town hall, you can reach me any time at Just as I’ve shared my priorities with you, I hope you’ll share your priorities with me. I’ve gotten all sorts of stories and ideas for policies from constituents, and your input is always valued. Indeed, many of our most important bills begin with an idea from a constituent who sees a problem that needs fixing. So never hesitate to reach out, on issues big or small. Thank you so much for the opportunity to serve!


Sen. Noel Frame