Friends and neighbors,
We are officially one-third of the way through the 2023 legislative session, which means we’re busier than ever, working to pass bills before key deadlines. It has been so incredible to be back in Olympia with my colleagues these last few weeks discussing the issues that matter most to our neighbors across Washington, and I’m so energized for the work ahead.
This week I wanted to update you all on ongoing efforts to address workforce issues at Washington State Ferries, provide some information about an exciting new program that just launched, and more!
Ferry Legislator Caucus
As the Senate chair of the Ferry Legislator Caucus in Olympia, I’ve been working with our House chair, Rep Paul, and my colleagues across the aisle and across the rotunda this session to address ongoing issues at Washington State Ferries that have disrupted the lives of many of our neighbors the last few years.
From workforce stressors to vessel procurement, we’re hard at work to solve problems and ensure folks across the state who depend on our marine highway system can continue to get to work, school, and the appointments they need. We’ve made great strides in recent years with significant investments in new vessels, but there’s still more to do. I’m glad to be rising to meet these challenges with other legislators who are just as passionate about ensuring transit access for communities across our state.
Apply for the Working Families Tax Credit!
In other big news, the Working Families Tax Credit recently launched! Thanks to a law we passed in 2021, this new annual tax refund for Washington residents is worth up to $1,200, depending on your income level and how many children you have in your household. More than 400,000 Washington families will qualify.
Check here to learn more, including whether your family is eligible: www.workingfamiliescredit.wa.gov
Policy Cutoff at the Legislature
Now that week six of the legislative session has come to a close, we’ve also hit a key deadline – policy committee cutoff.
“Cutoff” is another name for the deadline by which bills need to be passed out of their original committees to keep moving through the legislative process. And it’s a milestone for our shared priorities as we keep up our work — together — to get our neighbors’ ideas-turned-bills signed into law.
Stay in touch!
I also encourage you to get involved by testifying in committee – which you can do remotely from the comfort of your home!
I look forward to continuing to work with you this year.
All the best,