Friday, February 17 was house of origin policy cutoff where all bills referred to a policy committee had to be passed out of committee by that date. The week was filled with tight hearings and committee votes. Those that didn’t get out of committee are now considered dead. The exception are bills deemed necessary to implement the budget (NTIB).
After the cutoff on Friday, the upcoming week will largely be fiscal committee hearings and executive sessions. Fiscal week is always one of the more intense times during session. Fiscal committees include the House fiscal committees (Appropriations, Capital Budget, and Finance), Senate Ways and Means, and the House or Senate Transportation Committee. Bills referred to these committees needed to get voted out by Friday, February 24th, which gives many of them just one week to get scheduled for both a hearing and executive session. This means that the week will be filled with long hearings (sometimes very long) in fiscal committees. Testimony in fiscal committees differs from policy committees in that fiscal chairs request testifiers to speak to the fiscal aspects of the bill, rather than make a policy case.
Because of concerns about the state’s fiscal landscape, and a number of big-ticket items that have to be addressed (e.g. the collective bargaining agreements, behavioral health and homelessness, etc.), many bills simply won’t make it or will be amended in order to bring the fiscal note down.
There are several bills scheduled for a hearing this coming week that may be of interest to the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce:
TVW’s Legislative Review does clips each day highlighting some of the hot topics of the day. You can find links to the Legislative Review videos here.
A Primer on Null & Void and Subject to Appropriations
During executive sessions in both the House Appropriations and Senate Ways & Means Committees this week, a lot of bills will be amended to include a ‘Null and Void’ or ‘Subject to Appropriation’ clause. When a bill has this language added, depending on where it is placed it means either a section or subsection of a bill or the bill in its entirety is invalid unless funding is provided in the budget by a specified date.
The intention behind these clauses is to prevent a bill, or a component of a bill, from being enacted that doesn’t end up getting the money needed to implement it. Both Democrats and Republicans will propose null and void clauses. It is standard practice in the fiscal committees for these to be added to most bills and they are often done by a verbal amendment.
Upcoming Events Report
Finance (House) - HHR A and Virtual JLOB - 2/22 @ 8:00am
HB 1611 - Exec Session - Concerning local government permitting.
HB 1670 - Exec Session - Raising the limit factor for property taxes.
HB 1761 - Exec Session - Increasing the personal property tax exemption.
HJR 4206 - Exec Session - Concerning the taxation of personal property.
Appropriations (House) - HHR A and Virtual JLOB - 2/22 @ 1:30pm
SHB 1389 - Public Hearing - Concerning residential rent increases under the residential landlord- tenant act and the manufactured/mobile home landlord-tenant act. (Remote Testimony Available).
HB 1445 - Exec Session - Concerning law enforcement and local corrections agency misconduct through investigations and legal actions.
SHB 1579 - Public Hearing - Establishing a mechanism for independent prosecutions within the office of the attorney general of criminal conduct arising from police use of force. (Remote Testimony Available).
Ways & Means (Senate) - SHR 4 and Virtual JACB - 2/22 @ 1:30pm
SSB 5424 - Public Hearing - Concerning flexible work for general and limited authority Washington peace officers. (Remote Testimony Available).
SSB 5651 - Public Hearing - Concerning equity and environmental justice in the growth management act. (Remote Testimony Available).
Appropriations (House) - HHR A and Virtual JLOB - 2/23 @ 9:00am
SHB 1025 - Exec Session - Creating a private right of action for harm from violations of the state Constitution or state law by peace officers.
SHB 1110 - Exec Session - Increasing middle housing in areas traditionally dedicated to single- family detached housing.
SHB 1132 - Exec Session - Concerning oversight and training requirements for limited authority Washington peace officers and agencies.
SHB 1477 - Exec Session - Making changes to the working families' tax credit.
Appropriations (House) - HHR A and Virtual JLOB - 2/24 @ 9:00am
SHB 1389 - Exec Session - Concerning residential rent increases under the residential landlord- tenant act and the manufactured/mobile home landlord-tenant act.
SHB 1579 - Exec Session - Establishing a mechanism for independent prosecutions within the office of the attorney general of criminal conduct arising from police use of force.