On Monday, the Legislature reached the house of origin cutoff. Most of our priority bills made is past this crucial deadline. Because most of our bills started in the House, we will now be working on moving those bills through the Senate.
February 18, 2022
In this week’s update:
On Monday, the Legislature reached the house of origin cutoff. Most of our priority bills made is past this crucial deadline. Because most of our bills started in the House, we will now be working on moving those bills through the Senate. We anticipate a much harder push in the Senate for safe staffing and will need as much community advocacy as possible. Please email your senator and ask them to pass safe staffing!
As a reminder, all hearings and meetings with legislators are taking place over Zoom and are being aired on TVW. WSNA’s 2022 Legislative Priorities are available online.
On Sunday, Feb. 13, HB 1868 passed out of the House 55-43. We maintained our bipartisan support with Rep. Bruce Chandler (R-Granger) joining the Democrats in voting for the bill. If you haven’t already, you can watch the floor debate here. The House adopted two amendments, a striker by Rep. Riccelli (D-Spokane) and another amendment by Rep. Mike Volz (R-Spokane). The striker included several changes that came from negotiations with the Washington State Hospital Association. The Volz amendment removed the private right of action clause. The bill was referred to the Senate Labor, Commerce & Tribal Affairs Committee and has a hearing on Monday, Feb. 21.
TAKE ACTION: HB 1868 — Safe Staffing Standards — is scheduled for a hearing Monday, Feb. 21, in the Senate Labor, Commerce & Tribal Affairs Committee. Due to the remote legislative session this year, individuals can sign-in remotely to support this bill. By signing in, you are putting your support for the bill on the legislative record (not testifying). The information you provide will be made available to legislative committee members and staff of the committee and will be included in the legislative record and meeting archival purposes. NOTE: When signing-in, please leave the “organization” blank; do not put the name of your employer or WSNA in this box. This is so that your employer and WSNA can enter their official organizational positions on the record without confusion.
Instructions for signing-in:
SIGN IN SUPPORT: You can begin doing this right away up until one hour before start of the hearing Monday, Feb. 21 (sign-in will close at 8:30 a.m. on Monday).Start here
Workforce development bills
HB 1659 passed the House on Sunday 83-15. This bill broadens the Washington College Grant program by expanding eligibility standards and including additional stipends for wrap-around services such as childcare and tutoring. The bill was amended on the floor with a striker from the sponsor, Rep. Vandana Slatter (D-Bellevue), to require the Washington Student Achievement Council to ensure that each school provides students with the option to either apply the bridge grant to their accounts or have funds disbursed to them. The bill was referred to the Senate Higher Education & Workforce Development Committee and is scheduled for a hearing on Tuesday, Feb. 22, at 1:30 p.m. You can watch the floor debate for HB 1659 here.
HB 2007, which establishes a nurse educator loan repayment program, also passed the House on Sunday with a vote of 97-1. The bill was referred to the Higher Education & Workforce Development committee and has a hearing scheduled for Tuesday. You can watch the floor debate for HB 2007 here.
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) training
HB 1622 was heard in the Senate Higher Education & Workforce Development Committee on Thursday, Feb. 17. The bill would establish a SANE online and clinical training program as well as a regional SANE leader pilot program at the WSU College of Nursing. WSNA Nurse Representative Shawn Reed and WSNA Lobbyist Erica Hallock testified in support of the bill. HB 1622 is scheduled for executive session on Tuesday, Feb. 22.
HB 1621, which would establish a stipend program for nurses to be trained to be a SANE, did not pass out of the House by the Tuesday, Feb. 15 house of origin cutoff. We could, however, see its provision included in the operating budgets that will be released on Monday, Feb. 21.
School nurse funding
2SHB 1664, which seeks to adjust the prototypical school funding model to provide increased and dedicated funding for school nurses, social workers, counselors and psychologists, was referred straight to the Senate Ways & Means Committee where it is scheduled for a hearing on Monday, Feb. 22.
We also hope to see funding included in the operating budgets that will be released on Monday, Feb. 21.
School Nurse Organization of Washington President Liz Pray testified in favor of 2SHB 1890 at the Wednesday, Feb. 16 meeting of the Senate Behavioral Health Subcommittee to Health & Long Term Care. 2SHB 1890 calls for the creation of a strategic plan for children and youth behavioral health needs.
Glucose monitoringHB 1124 in the Senate Health & Long Term Care Committee. HB 1124 gives RNs the authority to delegate glucose monitoring and testing to a registered certified nursing assistant or a certified home care aide. The bill was unanimously voted out of committee on Thursday, Feb. 17. Because there is no fiscal impact, the bill will go directly to the Senate Rules Committee. You can watch Erin’s testimony by clicking the image below:
This week WSNA signed on to a letter with other labor organizations asking the House to support HB 1837. HB 1837 gives the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) the authority to prevent work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Since 2003, L&I has been blocked from creating rules that would make workplaces safer by reducing the number of repetitive motion injuries, which now account for 40% of workers’ compensation claims. HB 1837 would repeal the ban that was put in place by a 2002 business-backed initiative. The bill passed out of the House on Monday with a 50-48 vote. The bill is scheduled for a hearing in the Senate Labor, Commerce & Tribal Affairs Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 23.
Please look for regular email updates on legislative action as the legislative session continues – we look forward to your participation in the process!