News

Billig: Governor’s veto of Low Carbon Fuels bill provision an “overstep of executive power”

Billig: Governor’s veto of Low Carbon Fuels bill provision an “overstep of executive power”

Senate Majority Leader Andy Billig on Monday released the statement below following Gov. Jay Inslee’s veto of a provision of the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (HB 1091). “This veto is an overstep of executive power. The governor has attempted to create a power for his office that simply does not exist. The constitution is clear that the governor is permitted only to veto a full section of a bill. In this case he has vetoed a subsection. “What’s worse, this is the second time in recent years this governor has attempted to invent such a power. He lost ...

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Governor approves Saldaña’s HEAL Act to ensure environmental justice

Governor approves Saldaña’s HEAL Act to ensure environmental justice

  OLYMPIA Today Gov. Jay Inslee signed legislation that will reduce environmental health disparities and improve the health of all people in Washington state using principles of environmental justice. Senate Bill 5141, the Healthy Environment for All Act (HEAL Act), addresses the disproportionate exposure to environmental hazards suffered by Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color, along with low-income communities in neighborhoods across Washington state, putting them at higher risk of adverse health outcomes. This risk is further amplified for communities with pre-existing economic barriers and environmental risks. The HEAL Act, sponsored by Sen. Rebecca Saldaña (D-Seattle), ...

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Governor signs bills to help survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault

Governor signs bills to help survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault

OLYMPIA – Survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault will gain crucial protections and supports, and abusers will be held more accountable, under legislation signed into law by the governor. “This year, we made our justice system more responsive to the trauma of survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence,” said Sen. Manka Dhingra, chair of the Senate Behavioral Health Subcommittee and vice chair of the Senate Law & Justice Committee. “We have a continual duty to help survivors reclaim their lives and move forward in a positive way, to understand that trauma exerts itself as a ...

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Governor signs Wilson bill to help kinship caregivers and childcare providers

Governor signs Wilson bill to help kinship caregivers and childcare providers

  OLYMPIA – Legislation signed into law today by Gov. Jay Inslee will help kids in foster care stay with family members and in their communities where possible. Senate Bill 5151, sponsored by Sen. Claire Wilson (D-Auburn), also waives licensing fees for childcare providers until 2023 and establishes a permanent program for outdoor, nature-based early learning. Help for kinship caregivers Consistent with the state’s goal of enabling family reunification wherever possible within the foster care system, SB 5151 allows DCYF to issue a child-specific license to a relative or other suitable person to provide foster care. This will help the ...

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Governor signs Hasegawa bill to implement JLARC racial equity analysis

Governor signs Hasegawa bill to implement JLARC racial equity analysis

OLYMPIA – Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill into law today that requires the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee (JLARC) to incorporate a racial equity analysis into its audits, reviews and evaluations. JLARC consists of 16 members evenly split between senators and representatives in the Republican and Democratic caucuses. Nonpartisan staff within JLARC evaluate programs and conduct performance audits, sunset reviews, and other analyses as assigned by the Legislature. Senate Bill 5405 was sponsored by Sen. Bob Hasegawa (D-Seattle) and allows JLARC to work with statewide commissions to design the racial equity analysis. “This is an important addition ...

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Governor signs Lovelett bill to expand farmworker housing

Governor signs Lovelett bill to expand farmworker housing

OLYMPIA – Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law today a bill to increase community-based housing opportunities for local farmworkers in Washington. Sponsored by Sen. Liz Lovelett (D-Anacortes), Senate Bill 5396, passed with bi-partisan support, addresses a shortage of seasonal and annual farmworker housing by extending an existing sales-and-use tax exemption. The exemption will now extend to housing where at least 50% of the occupants are farmworkers and to housing used by seasonal farmworkers but also used by other occupants for parts of the year.

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New law ensures access to vital services for families

New law ensures access to vital services for families

OLYMPIA – Families that rely on Washington’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program will see an additional boost in benefits along with clarified expectations under legislation signed into law today by Gov. Inslee. Senate Bill 5214, sponsored by Sen. Joe Nguyen (D-West Seattle), will allow more families to continue using the vital social program during times of high statewide unemployment. The new law will allow for hardship extensions beyond the 60-month lifetime TANF limit if state unemployment is at or above 7 percent. “Even before the public health crisis we are currently in, it was clear that our ...

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Governor approves Wilson bill to improve reentry services

Governor approves Wilson bill to improve reentry services

  OLYMPIA Today Gov. Jay Inslee signed legislation that will improve public safety by ensuring access to services for formerly incarcerated or confined individuals reentering the community. Senate Bill 5304, sponsored by Sen. Claire Wilson (D-Auburn), will provide a “warm handoff” when someone leaves custody and rejoins the community by allowing them to be covered by Medicaid upon their release from incarceration or confinement. It will also ensure that their managed care provider is notified of their release and given the necessary information to initiate their benefits. "Healthcare coverage during this transition will give people access to services ...

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Governor signs historic legislation expanding access to childcare

Governor signs historic legislation expanding access to childcare

  OLYMPIA Today Gov. Jay Inslee signed legislation that will address one of the leading challenges for Washington households by dramatically increasing the accessibility and affordability of childcare while stabilizing and expanding an industry in crisis. “Childcare is a major concern for the vast majority of households in Washington,” said Sen. Claire Wilson (D-Auburn), the bill’s sponsor. “This new law will help parents keep their jobs and the salaries they need to take care of their families by increasing access to affordable, quality childcare.” Pre-pandemic, the Child Care Collaborative Task Force reported that the childcare crisis was costing ...

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Inslee signs capital gains excise tax into law

Inslee signs capital gains excise tax into law

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 4, 2021 OLYMPIA – Earlier today, Gov. Jay Inslee signed a critical piece of tax reform legislation. Senate Bill 5096, sponsored by Sen. June Robinson, D-Everett, enacts a capital gains excise tax to fund the expansion and affordability of child care, early learning, and the state’s paramount duty to provide an education for the children of Washington. “This important step to rebuild our unfair tax code was taken after years of work, years of dialogue, and thousands of voices calling for this policy,” said Robinson, who also serves as the Operating & Revenue Vice Chair ...

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