Thank you everyone who was able to join us for our amazing special briefing with Senator Sharon Nelson (D-34), and a big thank you to the Senator herself for joining us, and for being so candid and so inspiring.
For those of you who weren't able to join, Senator Nelson talked at length about how important your advocacy is, especially right now during what may be our last opportunity to influence the special session.
The Speaker asked us to share this special message with you:
"We still have a good chance to pass a jobs package that includes a substantial amount for housing, but it depends on whether people advocate for it. You need to keep fighting for our values — work your individual projects as well as the big picture items like housing as a whole. You can still make a difference, there's no doubt about it."
– Speaker Frank Chopp, 43rd LD
Great news! Governor Gregoire signed EHB 2048 into law. Thank you everyone who called the Governor's office, it's really because of you that we were able to make this happen.
For more information, please see our official press release: http://wliha.org/news/press-release-governor-signs-bipartisan-bill-prev…
The passage of HB 2048 at the end of last month was an incredible victory that will bring our state closer to ending homelessness. After 2048 goes into effect, at least 71,000 will either be saved from entering the brutality of homelessness or will be lifted out of it. But the County Auditors are trying to prevent this. They are asking the Governor to veto the bill.
Our elected officials are facing enormous pressure to compromise and close special session. But devastating choices are still on the table, including the elimination of Housing and Essential Needs and Disability Lifeline Medical, and deep cuts to TANF. And funding for the Housing Trust Fund is yet to be determined.
The budget debate -- much like the cold weather here in Seattle -- seems to be dragging on and on. And unfortunately, the budget, much like inclement weather, seems to hit those without a home especially hard.
The Capitol was still and quiet until Thursday when the Senate Republicans unveiled yet another surprise budget. Like the last one, it was shrouded in secrecy. Senate Republican leadership hid it even from the Governor with whom they met for budget negotiations in the hour before the unveiling. Although the release of yet another Republican budget was a surprise – the contents weren’t. The safety net was slashed again, but even worse this time, with the Housing and Essential Needs program completely eliminated, Disability Lifeline Medical completely eliminated and TANF deeply cut.
At 2:00p today, Governor Gregoire signed into law the Fair Tenant Screening Act, a law aimed at addressing growing problems in tenant screening reports that puts Washington in the forefront of the nation in addressing these issues.
You can read our full press release over in the Press Center - or click HERE.
Last night the tumultuous 2012 legislative session came to a temporary close. With the final swing of the gavel and the declaration of “sine die”, the legislature closed their session with significant work remaining before them. And the Governor immediately called for another special session to start on Monday the 12th.