Week of March 7th: Legislative Update

March 7, 2022

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We’ve never been this close to victory…

With just days left in the 2022 legislative session, I’m excited to share that we are on the verge of victory for all of our priority bills. First, let’s celebrate what we’ve accomplished together:

🎉🎉🎉 SB 5042, GMA Sprawl Loophole Bill, PASSES!!! 🎉🎉🎉

First introduced 14 years ago, our bill to close the sprawl loophole in the GMA finally got its flowers late Thursday night. Words can hardly express how excited we are to see this bill pass.

SB 5042 closes a loophole in the Growth Management Act that previously allowed for growth in rural landscapes that does not comply with the GMA. As Washington state grows, increasingly smaller cities outside of urban cores are growing the fastest. SB 5042 ensures that new development will stay concentrated in designated urban growth areas, places where homes are easily connected with transit, jobs, and public services.

Say THANK YOU for passing SB 5042!

🎉🎉🎉 HB 1762, Municipal Corporation Bill, PASSES!!! 🎉🎉🎉

We’re protecting our work to advance housing affordability, started last year with HB 1220, by passing HB 1762, a bill that ends the veto power of municipal corporations over local housing policy. HB 1762 removes a barrier to full implementation of HB 1220 in all Washington communities and ensures that we’re able to adopt a range of housing options affordable to people at every income level.

What’s Next for HB 1099, the GMA Climate Bill

Thank you to the nearly 1000 people who contacted their legislators last week to demand action on climate! We still have work to do before the session concludes on Thursday.

Quick recap: HB1099 passed the WA Senate on Thursday evening. However, the Senate Ways and Means Committee scrubbed the bill of climate mitigation actions, removing requirements that our fastest growing communities reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and vehicle miles traveled (VMT). It was even scrubbed of the term “climate change” repeatedly. This harmful amendment remained when it was voted on by the Senate.

What’s next: HB 1099 heads into what’s called conference – basically a committee of House and Senate members look at the two different versions of the bill passed by each house and try to come to agreement on a final version. This is our opportunity to put HB 1099 back together. After conference, the bill heads back to the floor for a final, up/down vote.

What we need from you: Futurewise staff is working closely with our legislative champions to save HB 1099. We’re confident we can do it, but legislators still need to hear from you about why it’s so important.

Ask your legislator to fix HB 1099!

The end is in sight, and I know that we can get there together.