|Ann Murphy, President||March 4, 2018 Vol. 50, Issue 9|
This Week's Alert!
If you do nothing else, here is the most important action you can take:
Pass SSB 6620 Before Time Runs Out
SSB 6620 emerged Friday, March 2 from the Senate Rules Committee and is waiting for a vote on the Senate floor. The bill includes the Enhanced Background Checks for Assault Weapons (originally SB 5444) in a School Security package that also includes grants to school districts for emergency implementation and a confidential communications system allowing students, teachers, and the public to report possible threats with anonymity.
If the Senate votes YES, it goes to the House Judiciary Committee, which had a hearing on the Enhanced Background Checks before the cutoff, and then needs to pass quickly to the Rules Committee and then to the floor with passage by March 8. It’s a quick trip but can be done with commitment and the public keeping the pressure on.
Click here to urge your legislators to support additional safety measures for our schools and communities.
Final Push for Inclusive Automatic Voter Registration (AVR)
AVR (HB 2595) has passed both the House and the Senate but with different language. Leaders from both chambers are working together to agree on the final language. This could possibly result in the Health Benefits Exchange stripped from the bill. This key component of the bill would register thousands, including many from traditionally disenfranchised groups.
Please let your legislators know that you want an AVR bill that is inclusive by clicking here.
League-supported Civics Bill has One Last Hurdle to Clear
We are pleased that this Civics Education bill (2SHB 1896) passed the Senate with a 49-0 vote as amended to remove this language: "Neither school districts nor the state board of education may require students to obtain a passing grade on the course required by this section as a requirement for high school graduation." League supports the removal of the House language. Now the bill has been passed back to the House for concurrence with the Senate version.
Click here to let your representatives know to keep this amended language out of the bill.
Connecting to a National Issue – Congress Debates Dream Act
The League continues to focus on passage of the Dream Act in the US House and Senate.
The LWVUS Lobby Corps is working in Washington, D.C. on March 5 to present the League’s position of support on the Dream Act. Lobby Corps will be meeting with Washington, D.C. staffs of Rep. Dan Newhouse (4th District); Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (5th District); and Rep. Dave Reichert (8th District) and leaving this statement. If you are in the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 8th Districts please reinforce this communication with your Congressperson.
Click here to reach out to your Senators and Representatives via the LWVUS action alert and encourage them to protect the 800,000 young people who were brought to the United States as children.
Status and Actions Needed for Other Legislative Priorities
Please click on the areas of interest to you to see the status of bills that the Lobby Team is working on and what action is needed this week. The issue webpages include the Lobby Team contact information, League positions, and history of bills the League is tracking for this legislative session.
Economic and Social Justice: NEW Over seven social justice bills passed both chambers. Some of these in the works for a very long time are: Ban the Box, LFO Reform, shared leave for employees, expanding rental housing options, promoting the use of surplus public property, and access to homeless housing and assistance...(read more here)
Health Care: NEW Several bills survived the last cutoff in the Legislative process. These bills deal with prescription drug insurance, eligibility for charity care, the coverage for hearing devices by public health insurance and Medicaid, and coverage of preventative health services by all insurance providers...(read more here)
Civic Education: NEW We are pleased that 2SHB 1896 passed the Senate with a 49-0 vote. We are asking that the House members concur with the bill as it passed the Senate, without the amendment added by the House Education Committee...(read more here)
Climate Change, Energy, & Transportation: NEW Several bills which we have been reporting on have either failed for lack of votes; became burdened with too many amendments, or just languished in the rules committee...(read more here)
Click here for a list of Lobby Team members and contact info.