February 17, 2016
LEAD: Legislative Education, Advocacy & Direction
2016 Edition 5

Update on Policy Bills and Fiscal Forecast

The House and Senate have until Wednesday, February 17, 2016, to pass bills to the other chamber. Bills that, at this writing, are still in their respective Rules Committee are unlikely to get a floor vote by then. Starting Wednesday, the various policy committees start up again holding hearings on the bills from the other chamber. They have only nine days to do this before the next bill cutoff.

During that time, the state's fiscal forecast will be released, and the supplemental budget proposals, both operating and capital, will be unveiled. There are several issues that must be addressed by these budget proposals: first, in the capital budget, what cuts must be made to cover the shortfall in the model toxic control act account; and second, in the operating budget, how to address the higher-than-anticipated Medicaid costs projected at hundreds of millions of dollars over the next four years.

The following is the status of the bills that the Chapter is tracking:

HB 2945: Establishing a legislative task force to review the growth management act. The bill still resides in the House Rules Committee.
SB 6420: Modifying certain land capacity review and evaluation requirements. This bill is still in the Senate Rules Committee.
SB 6426: Allowing schools to be sited outside an urban growth area. This bill is on the Senate floor calendar and, thus, is eligible for a floor vote.

If you have any questions about the Chapter's Legislative Committee (LC), please contact Yorik Stevens-Wajda or Esther Larsen, the LC Co-Chairs. A big thanks to Michael Shaw and all the members of the Legislative Committee for contributing their time, bill summaries, and discussion this regular session.

American Planning Association, Washington Chapter
[email protected]  206-682-7436  www.washington-apa.org