Seventh week of Session
This week, both the Senate and House released their budget proposals. Several WSNA priority bills moved out of the policy committee in the opposite chamber this week. The deadline for all bills to be voted out of policy committees was today, Feb. 23. The next step for many of these bills is the fiscal committee – and the fiscal committee cutoff is Monday, Feb. 26. We expect HB 1715, the Rest Breaks Bill, will have a hearing in the Senate Ways & Means Committee this weekend.
In this week’s update:
- Rest Breaks: Fiscal Committee hearing
- Senate and House supplemental budgets
- WSNA testimony on SANE Bill
- Update on WSNA priority bills
WSNA’s 2018 Legislative Priorities can be found here.
Rest Breaks: Fiscal committee hearing
The Senate Labor & Commerce Committee passed the Rest Breaks bill, HB 1715, out of committee this week. The next step for this bill is a hearing in the Senate Ways & Means Committee where testimony will focus on how this bill would impact the state budget.
Please take two minutes to email the Senate Ways & Means Committee and ask them to support HB 1715.
Senate and House supplemental budgets
On Monday, the Senate released its proposed 2018 supplemental operating budget. The House released its budget proposal on Tuesday. While there are some differences, both budgets show much agreement between the two chambers on many of the budget issues WSNA is tracking. Here’s how WSNA priorities fared in both budgets:
WSNA testimony on SANE bill
Thank you to WSNA member Martha Phillips, RN, SANE, for coming to Olympia on Monday to testify in support of HB 2101. Martha works as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner in Whatcom and Skagit Counties, and testified about how more training is needed to ensure SANEs are available when victims of sexual assault present in hospitals around the state.
HB 2101 was voted out of committee on Monday following the public hearing. The bill is now in the Senate Rules Committee waiting to be pulled to the Senate floor for a vote.
Update on WSNA’s priority bills
Many of WSNA’s legislative priorities passed out of their chamber of origin and are still moving forward.
Surprise Billing (Medical Debt): 2ESHB 2114 was heard in the Senate Health & Long Term Care Committee this week. WSNA joined the Office of the Insurance Commissioner in testifying in support of this bill. The bill passed out of Committee on Thursday, February 22nd.
Address the Opioid Crisis: HB 2489, the Governor’s omnibus opioid bill, passed out of the Senate Health & Long Term Care Committee on Monday. It is now waiting to be heard in Senate Ways & Means.
Secure Medicine Return: ESHB 1047 was heard in the Senate Health & Long Term Care Committee this week. It was voted out of Committee on Thursday, February 22nd with two amendments.
We will continue to keep you updated on these bills as they move through fiscal committees and then on to the Senate floor.
Please look for regular email updates on legislative action as session continues – we look forward to your participation in the process!