April 2023 Executive Director Note

May 4, 2023

Futurewise staff, board and partners in front of solar panels holding signs that read "Washington Leads on Climate"

We are winning!! It feels good to say that and savor the moment.

Yesterday Governor Inslee signed HB 1181 into law, adding climate change to the Growth Management Act. On Monday, the Governor is scheduled to sign HB 1110, allowing middle housing options (duplexes through 6-plexes depending on the location) in residential neighborhoods across the state. And those are just the topline wins, with so many other complementary new policies and budget allocations that are covered in more detail this write up and in this podcast I just did here.

Gov. Jay Inslee signing HB 1181 surrounded by supporters

I always immediately start thinking about what we have to do next, the problems left unsolved, the opportunities waiting to be seized, and I know that’s true for a lot of us. But if we want to be in this for the long haul and keep winning, we need to remember to stop and enjoy the good stuff. So take a moment. These victories are yours. You made this happen with your emails, bill sign-ins, phone calls, donations, with every action you took towards our shared policy goals for this legislative session.

And even more important than taking the time to celebrate is to celebrate in community. That’s why we are having a volunteer happy hour tonight at 6 PM at Owl’n’Thistle in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. It’s a chance for us to say thank you, but also to help you connect more with each other. If you are in the Seattle area, please come out and join us! For folks across other parts of the state, we want to help you connect and celebrate together too and I want to meet you when I’m visiting your part of the state. Please reach out!

Futurewise supporters on the steps of the Washington state capitol, holding a banner that reads "For Our Future"

I have so enjoyed our staff and board gatherings and celebrations over the last weeks. The signing ceremony for HB 1181 yesterday was a treat to connect with new and old allies in the Tri-Cities. As I write this, I’m on the train to Spokane for more connections with local leaders. All of these celebrations culminate when we come together on May 20 in Woodinville for our annual Livable Communities Spring Celebration. This year’s event will be a particular treat. If you haven’t registered yet, you have one more day to do so: www.futurewise.org/fw2023.

There will be setbacks and disappointments. There will be hard work and long days. There will be conflicts, tensions, uncertainties and stresses that at moments will feel overwhelming. But right now we are winning. The sun is shining. Let’s enjoy it together.