Dear Friends and Neighbors,
Today is the 25th day of the 60-day session. I can't believe we're nearly halfway through! Yesterday was the “cutoff” for House bills to move out of policy committees or else they are considered “dead” for the year. Now our focus shifts to our fiscal committees and considering bills which have costs or savings associated with them. I serve on the House Transportation Committee, which is a fiscal committee. The cutoff date for bills to pass fiscal committees is Feb. 11.
Update: Legislation I'm working on
- House Bill 2104 to expand the budget transparency map I worked to get passed into law last year received a public hearing yesterday. This legislation will provide a link to state contracts with capital budget or transportation expenditures.
- House Bill 2105, which would require meeting agendas to be posted online 24 hours before a meeting of a public agency, could come up for a vote in the House very soon. I'm hopeful we can get this passed this year.
- House Bill 2106 would help counties save election dollars in the future by relieving them of certain primary requirements. It passed the House 86-10 and has been referred to the Senate Governmental Operations Committee for consideration. You can read more about it here.
Watch my recent video update where you can see the path I take from my office to the House floor, and my desk on the House floor where I vote:
Students from Wenatchee High School testify before House committee
Last December, I had the opportunity to serve as an evaluator for the Project Citizen Showcase at Wenatchee High School. One of the groups presented on student nutrition, and they really impressed me. This year when I learned of legislation that would address student nutrition in schools, I contacted the school and asked if the students might be interested in extending their project to come testify before an actual legislative committee. House Bill 2410 would provide competitive grants within existing dollars for schools to provide healthier food options for students. Logan Brown, Katherine Robinson, Jackie Bollinger and Carie Graves (pictured below) made the trip to Olympia from Wenatchee to testify on this bill and they did an excellent job. They each presented compelling facts to back up their testimony, and they were very articulate and professional. I was so proud of them! You can watch the hearing here and read the story in the Wenatchee High School's Apple Leaf here.
Open Government Caucus
This week, the Open Government Caucus held its first meeting, and we had a great turnout of lawmakers, staff, media and even student interns who wanted to discuss how the Legislature can actively pursue more transparency and open government in our state. It is my hope that we can work together – Republicans and Democrats, representatives and senators – to pass legislation this year and in the future that will continue to shed more light and provide better access to citizens about their government, at all levels. You can watch the entire meeting here.
Join us for a telephone town hall meeting!
Hearing from you is the most important and most enjoyable part of my job as your state representative. Sen. Linda Evans Parlette, Rep. Cary Condotta and I are hosting a telephone town hall together to make ourselves available to answer your questions and hear about what is important to you. Join us Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 7:00 p.m. for an hour-long community conversation about how we can make Washington a better place to live and work. To join the call, dial toll-free (877) 229-8493, then enter pin 112411. To ask a question live, press star (*) then 3 on your phone. I look forward to talking with you!
If you can't make the telephone town hall, please feel free to contact my office. My contact information is below. It's an honor to serve you.
122G Legislative Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
360-786-7832 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000