Reminder: Our 2023 Week of Action starts next Monday! There’s virtual events and steps you can take to support our 2023 Legislative Agenda for increasing transportation equity and safety for all Washingtonians. You can learn more about this year’s events and how you can get involved here.
Welcome to the third week of the 2023 Washington State Legislative Session!
Speaking of action, we need sign-ons to support an equitable Road Usage Charge (RUC) bill! This helps ensure transportation revenues capture the true cost of driving, and can be spent on multimodal solutions. Sign on for an equitable RUC!
We also want to be sure legislators in every district hear directly from their constituents who want to remove harmful jaywalking laws. They don’t protect people from getting hit by cars, are disproportionately enforced against low-income people, people of color, and unhoused individuals, and are an inefficient use of public resources. Contact your legislators!
What’s coming upWe anticipate a RUC bill—which will drop soon—to be heard in the next few weeks. This could set how the state funds transportation for the next few generations. Washington’s gas tax expenditures are currently restricted for “highway purposes” only, due to the state’s 18th Amendment. We need to reimagine the future of transportation funding and ensure that a RUC bill is NOT 18th-Amendment restricted. It’s imperative we get this right. We are asking organizations to sign on to this letter to the legislature to tell them what our priorities are: Sign on for an equitable RUC!
ABOUT: SB 5466 would incentivize more housing in tandem with rapid transit expansion, using grants and financing opportunities.
STATUS: This bill was just dropped by Sen. Marko Liias and referred to the Senate Local Government Committee. We anticipate a hearing and a companion bill in the House by Rep. Julia Reed soon.
ABOUT: HB 1513 would limit police from engaging in certain kinds of stops with drivers or cyclists for non-moving violations that don’t create an immediate safety risk (such as expired tabs, a broken tail light, helmet laws, etc.), and would create a grant program to help drivers solve said issues.
STATUS: This bill dropped on Friday, sponsored by Rep. Chipalo Street! We expect a Senate version to drop soon, too.
ABOUT: SB 5452 allows for impact fee revenue to be used for separated bike paths not attached to roadways.
STATUS: We will ask people to sign in PRO when it is scheduled for a hearing!
ABOUT: SB 5432 allows regional transit authorities to contact tow trucks for removing a vehicle from light rail without needing to first contact police, delaying transit as riders wait for enforcement to show up.
STATUS: Sign in PRO here!
What happened last week
The Jaywalking repeal companion bills, which you just read about at the top, dropped last week! We anticipate hearings in the next few weeks.
Additionally, SB 5203 / HB 1181 (updating the Growth Management Act, GMA, to establish a new ‘climate change and resiliency’ goal) were both heard in committee last week. The House Bill is already scheduled for a vote on the 25th! These bills would also increase housing capacity within urban growth areas, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce pollution in historically impacted communities, and address adverse impacts to cities and counties due to extreme weather events.
Before you go, be sure to check out our 2023 Bill Tracker, where you can see all the bills we’re supporting and opposing this year and their statuses.
Ride on!– Transportation Choices