Legislative Roll Call: Week 7

This week marked the release of House and Senate budget proposals, and yet another bill cutoff – all bills that are not considered “necessary to implement the budget” needed to be voted out of a policy committee by Wednesday. 

Budgets Released

As usual, there are differences between the House and Senate proposals that will need to be ironed out “in conference.” Over the next two weeks, a small team of negotiators for each chamber will work on a negotiated final budget that reconciles the differences between the two. Our partners at League of Education Voters have put together a very comprehensive side-by-side comparison of the education budgets. We’ve pulled out a few highlights below.

We are thrilled to report that the Senate budget fully funds the Ninth Grade Success Initiative at $3 million. Unfortunately, the House budget does not include any funding; we are urging lawmakers to keep the Senate funding level in the final budget!

ItemGovernor’s BudgetHouse BudgetSenate Budget Advocacy Ask 
Ninth Grade Success Initiative Not includedNot included$3 million Match the Senate level!
Rally for College $3 million $3 million Not includedMatch the House level! 
SB 5904 to align financial aid timelines$1 million Not included $8.3 million Include some funding in the final budget 
HB 2214 to automatically enroll high school students receiving food benefits in WA College Grant  $239k $239k Not includedMatch the House level 
SB 5850 to address learning recovery and chronic absenteeism$0$0$2m Match the Senate level 
Legal financial obligation analysis Not includedNot included $165k Match the Senate level 
Audit of Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration (JRA) facilitiesNot includedNot included $400k Match the Senate level 
Gender responsive programming in JRA facilities Not includedNot included$200k Match the Senate level  
Contracted security guards at Echo Glen $9.032m$17.934m$9.032mThis is a poor use of public funds. Encourage equal investment in youth-serving programs. 

Cutoffs Continue

SB 5974 to eliminate uncollectible juvenile court debt has cleared the last hurdle and was voted off the House floor 66-27 this week! It’s headed to the Governor’s desk for signature! 

Other bills we’re tracking that need to pass out of a fiscal committee by Monday 2/26:

  • SB 5904: aligning and extending state financial aid timelines
  • HB 2214: auto-qualifying students receiving food stamps for the Washington College Grant
  • HB 2065: juvenile points retroactivity)

And a few bills are waiting in the Senate Rules committee to be pulled to the floor for a vote (which they need to receive by Friday 3/1):

  • HB 2217 to ensure more juvenile offenses are prosecuted in juvenile court
  • HB 2025 to expand state work study for college access programs.  

Thank you for your continued advocacy!


Liz Trautman
Government Affairs Director

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