Good wishes this Spring season with promises of hope as vaccines continue to become more available, and many faiths celebrate – Passover, Easter, Vaisakhi Day, Holi, and Ramadan. We wish you and your community good health and joyful celebrations!
Bills are now headed to the floor for passage – let’s keep up the momentum and push them all the way to the Governor’s desk! Please add your own language to the email prompts:
- HB 1236 Just Cause Evictions – In the Senate Rules Committee – Email your Senator and ask if they will vote for this bill.
- HB 1054 Prohibiting certain police tactics – In the Senate Rules Committee – Email your Senator and ask if they will vote for this bill.
- HB 5226 Driving While License Suspended – In the House Rules Committee – Email your Representatives to let them know that the Coalition to End Debt-Based License Suspensions is opposed to the current version because it does not fix this unjust system, and ask if they approve amending it to ensure that the bill will not allow license suspensions for failure to pay. See the ACLU letter FAN signed onto regarding this issue for more information.
Follow these links to see which committees your Senators and Representatives sit on. You can also call the Legislative Hotline to advocate for these bills at 800-562-6000. To learn more about each bill, go to apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/ and enter the bill number or check out FAN’s Issue Fact Sheets and Bill Tracker. Another great way to stay engaged this session is by attending your legislators’ town hall meetings and advocating for the bills you want to keep moving!
Last week fiscal committees held public hearings on over one hundred bills which then went to executive session where they considered amendments and voted on those bills and many others heard previously but not voted on yet. The fiscal committees also heard all three of the state’s budgets – Operating, Transportation, and Capital. Those three budgets in the House and Senate are now making it to their respective floor for further amendments and final passage. Once each chamber has adopted its version of the budgets, then each budget will go into its own conference committee to produce a copy for final passage which will go to the governor for passage the last day of session on April 25.
Bills that FAN is supporting which made it to the Rules Committee include:
- HB 1016 – Juneteenth Holiday
- HB 1091 – Clean Fuels Standards
- HB 1236 – Just Cause Evictions
- HB 1267 – Independent Investigations of police officers
- HB 1287 – Electric vehicles
- HB 1297 – Working Families Tax Credit
- HB 1310 – De-escalation as a statewide standard for police officers
- SB 5051 – Decertification standards and Criminal Justice Training Commission reforms
- SB 5141 – HEAL act/environmental justice
- SB 5160 – Landlord tenant relations
- SB 5172 – Overtime pay for farmworkers
- SB 5194 – Access/equity in Community & Technical Colleges
- SB 5214 – Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) reform
- SB 5226 – Driving While License Suspended – FAN has changed our position to opposed because it has been badly amended by debt collectors
- SB 5399 – Universal Health Care Commission
Two bills signed by the governor this week from FAN’s leg agenda were HB 1078 Voting Rights Restoration and HB 1151 Emergency food assistance!
Looking Ahead to Week Thirteen
Week 13 through Sunday, April 11th, both chambers will be on the floor running bills. If a bill has not been voted out of its opposite chamber by end of day April 11th it is dead, unless it has been designated NTIB (Necessary to Implement the Budget) by leadership. Many bills will need concurrence, so they will need to go back to the other chamber. If there is not a majority vote for concurrence, it will go to a conference committee for resolution. Final passage and amendments for the 2021-23 Operating, Transportation, and Capital budgets will occur over weeks 14 and 15.
Join us for FAN’s annual Spring Summits – Sundays, May 23 and June 6, from 2-4 PM! At the Summit you can gather virtually with advocates in your region and in your issue area of interest and begin to consider what steps we might take together in the year ahead. This event is open to advocates across the state, and the content and breakouts will be the same each Sunday. Please share the flyer, post it in your newsletter, and register for one of the dates below:
Eastern WA Update – Tree Planting
From Lauren Schubring, Eastern WA Regional Organizer:
On Thursday, April 15th at 4:00 PM, Faith Action Network is partnering with The Lands Council to plant trees in Spokane! This will be a safe way for us to connect in person and do something beneficial for the Earth in the week leading up to Earth Day.
It’s been hard to find ways to connect with people in our network during a pandemic. I really am looking forward to having this time to meet some people and do something together. Whether you have already been connected with FAN or are interested in starting to learn more, you and anybody that may want to join are welcome!
Here’s the link to register.
See you then! Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions.
Faith Communities in Action
Seattle’s Congregation Beth Shalom Immigration and Sanctuary Committee and the Jewish Coalition for Immigrant Justice NW hosted a virtual Pesach Action Lunch last week. They presented the Roadmap to Freedom resolution sponsored by WA Rep. Pramila Jayapal and immigration reform bills.
Marla Zink created this resource document with background information, plus sample letters and social media posts, so you can reach out to your communities and encourage them to contact their representatives in support of immigration reform.
In addition, we join the Jewish Coalition for Immigrant Justice NW in inviting you to their 3rd annual fundraiser on May 2 to benefit WAISN’s Fair Fight Bond Fund. You can learn more about the program and register at bit.ly/ShareOurHarvest. There are options for individual and organizational co-sponsors as well.
Our colleague at Temple Beth Am, Rabbi Jason Levine, shares an important resource for people across the state who are having difficulties accessing vaccines. He and his spouse Anna are working with the organization Find a COVID Shot WA to help ensure access especially to those who are elderly, BIPOC, disabled, or have other challenges that make them disproportionately at risk for COVID-19. Volunteers can help book people individually who need assistance, arrange vaccines for homebound individuals, as well as set up pop-up clinics to ensure vulnerable populations have access to this life-saving vaccine. Rabbi Jason, Anna, and the other volunteers would love to connect with you, whether you have 3 members who are homebound or 100 members who can’t book themselves. If you are interested, please contact Rabbi Jason Levine or Anna.
Events & Opportunities
Operation Nightwatch in Seattle is adding another street ministry position full time to their staff. Hours are flexible, good benefits, healthy place to work. They are especially encouraging BIPOC applicants. More info and application here.