2021 Washington State Legislative Session Report- Week 5

Week Five

The first several weeks of the session have been devoted to introducing and holding hearings on bills, however we are now approaching the next phase of session. Monday, February 15th is the policy cut off, where all bills that are not necessary to implement the budget must be out of their original policy committee in order to stay alive this session. One week later, February 22nd, is the fiscal cut off where all bills must be out of their respective fiscal committees. After that the legislature will start two weeks of virtual floor action where both the House and the Senate will debate and vote on bills. All bills must be voted out of their House of Origin (House or Senate) by March 9th. Of course as we mentioned before all bills that are deemed necessary to implement the budget, this includes all revenue proposals, are not subject to these cut offs. 

The priority of the legislature continues to be COVID-19 relief legislation. This week the Senate passed HB 1368, which will provide $2.2 billion to help the state respond to the pandemic, making investments in rental assistance, small business grants, food assistance, vaccine administration and more. The bill received bipartisan support and will now head to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law. Another bill to pass the Legislature this week was HB 1095, which will ensure businesses don’t have to pay B&O taxes on money received through emergency assistance grants from the state or federal government.

On Monday Governor Inslee signed his unemployment insurance bill, SB 5061, that passed the legislature with bipartisan support. The bill will provide relief to businesses by preventing an automatic increase in unemployment taxes, and to low-wage workers by raising their minimum benefit if they get laid off.

On Thursday Inslee announced five more regions will move to Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan, Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery. As of Sunday, every region but the South Central region will be in Phase 2. On Thursday Republican leaders sent a letter to the governor, Senate majority leader, and Speaker of the House requesting that they reopen the Capitol Campus for public access. They also requested clear guidance for Phase 3 of the Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery Plan. 

It is still too early to tell which revenue proposals will gain traction this session. In the upcoming weeks budget debates will begin to unfold. As each chamber releases their respective budgets proposals negotiations will begin to take place and at that point we will start to see a more clear picture of the budget and potential new revenues.

Important Dates:

 Feb 15 – House of Origin Policy Cutoff

 Feb 22 – House of Origin Fiscal Cutoff

 March 9 – House of Origin Floor Cutoff

 March 26 – Opposite House Policy Cutoff

 April 2 – Opposite House Fiscal Cutoff April 11 – Opposite House Floor Cutoff April 25 – Sine Die

The low carbon fuel standard legislation from Representative Fitzgibbon, HB 1091, has continued to move through the House.  It is now scheduled for hearing next week on Tuesday in the House Transportation committee for further consideration.  Additionally, we expect to see an updated Cap & Invest draft soon, which will likely move out of the Energy & Environment committee.  While the changes to come are unclear, this proposal continues to remain in play this session.

Decarbonization of buildings legislation brought forth by Representative Ramel (HB 1084) has now moved to the House Appropriations committee after passing out of the Environment & Energy committee last week.  We also continue to monitor the HEAL Act legislation from Senator Saldana concerning implementing recommendations from the environmental justice task force.  This proposal has been referred to the Senate Ways & Means committee but is not yet scheduled for a hearing.

Representative Lekanoff introduced a green bonds bill this week, HB 1513.  This proposal aims to reduce carbon emissions by levying a carbon pollution tax.  While we are not yet sure what will happen with this legislation, we will continue to track.

After passing out of the House Environment & Energy committee last week, HB 1280 is now scheduled for hearing in the House Capital Budget committee on Wednesday, February 17th.  This legislation would set requirements for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in public facilities design.  Representative Ramel has indicated that there will be some upcoming changes to this legislation.

Also moving through the House is HB 1393.  Executive action was taken on this proposal related to delaying the stewardship plan and annual report for solar panel manufacturers on Tuesday, February 9th.  Committee members gave the bill a do pass recommendation, and this bill will now move to the House Rules committee where it can be pulled to the floor at any time for a vote.

At this point no legislation has been introduced surrounding the transportation packages in either the House or Senate, however both chairs have indicated they are continuing to draft their proposals and will have official bill drafts sometime in the next month.

Clean Tech Alliance Bill Status & Upcoming Events Report

Upcoming Events

Transportation (House) – Virtual, – 2/16 @ 1:30pm

  1. 2SHB 1091 – Public Hearing – Reducing greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the carbon intensity of transportation fuel. (Remote testimony.)

Ways & Means (Senate) – Virtual, – 2/16 @ 1:30pm

  • SSB 5174 – Public Hearing – Providing for the recycling of wind turbine blades. (Remote testimony.)

Capital Budget (House) – Virtual, – 2/17 @ 8:00am

  • HB 1103 – Exec Session – Improving environmental and social outcomes with the production of building materials.

Transportation (Senate) – Virtual, – 2/18 @ 1:30pm

  • SB 5308 – Public Hearing – Reducing certain transportation electrification fees on hybrid vehicles. (Remote testimony.)

Ways & Means (Senate) – Virtual, – 2/18 @ 1:30pm

  • SSB 5174 – Exec Session – Providing for the recycling of wind turbine blades.

Bill #Abbrev. TitleShort DescriptionStatusSponsor
HB 1036Transportation fuel/carbonReducing greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the carbon intensity of transportation fuel.H Env & EnergyFitzgibbon
HB 1046Community solar programsConcerning community solar programs.H Env & EnergyBateman
2SHB 1050Fluorinated gasesReducing greenhouse gas emissions from fluorinated gases.H APPDP2SFitzgibbon
HB 1080 (SB 5083)Capital budget 2021-2023Concerning the capital budget.H Cap BudgetTharinger
HB 1081 (SB 5084)State gen. obligation bondsConcerning state general obligation bonds and related accounts.H Cap BudgetTharinger
SHB 1084 (SB 5093)Building decarbonizationReducing statewide greenhouse gas emissions by achieving greater decarbonization of residential and commercial buildings.H AppropsRamel
2SHB 1091 (SB 5231)Transportation fuel/carbonReducing greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the carbon intensity of transportation fuel.H TransportationFitzgibbon
HB 1093 (SB 5091)Operating budget, 2nd supp.Making 2019-2021 fiscal biennium second supplemental operating appropriations.H AppropsOrmsby
HB 1094 (SB 5092)Operating budget 2021-2023Making 2021-2023 fiscal biennium operating appropriations.H AppropsOrmsby
HB 1103 (SB 5366)Building materialsImproving environmental and social outcomes with the production of building materials.H Cap BudgetDuerr
HB 1125Energy investmentsIncentivizing investment in energy conservation and efficiency measures and expanding opportunities for energy rate discounts to, among other objectives, reduce the energy burden of low-income customers and vulnerable populations.H Env & EnergyShewmake
HB 1130Energy supply/consumersConcerning consumer affordability and reliability in energy supply.H Env & EnergyDye
HB 1135 (SB 5165)Transp. budget 2021-2023Making transportation appropriations for the 2021-2023 fiscal biennium.H TransportationFey
HB 1204 (SB 5256)Transp. electrificationConcerning the electrification of transportation.H TransportationMacri
HB 1393Photovoltaic module programDelaying certain implementation dates for the photovoltaic module stewardship and takeback program.H Rules RShewmake
HB 1406 (SB 5426)Wealth taxImproving the equity of Washington state’s tax code by creating the Washington state wealth tax and taxing extraordinary financial intangible assets.H FinanceFrame
HB 1513Carbon emissionsImproving environmental health by reducing carbon emissions through increasing climate resilience and mitigating the effects of climate change by levying a carbon pollution tax, authorizing a climate finance bond program, and investing in clean economic growth.H Env & EnergyLekanoff
HB 1534Carbon pollution taxEstablishing a carbon pollution tax that recognizes the nature of energy-intensive, trade-exposed industries.H Env & EnergyShewmake
SB 5083 (HB 1080)Capital budget 2021-2023Concerning the capital budget.S Ways & MeansFrockt
SB 5084 (HB 1081)State gen. obligation bondsConcerning state general obligation bonds and related accounts.S Ways & MeansFrockt
SB 5091 (HB 1093)Operating budget, 2nd supp.Making 2019-2021 fiscal biennium second supplemental operating appropriations.S Ways & MeansRolfes
SB 5092 (HB 1094)Operating budget 2021-2023Making 2021-2023 fiscal biennium operating appropriations.S Ways & MeansRolfes
SB 5093 (SHB 1084)Building decarbonizationReducing statewide greenhouse gas emissions by achieving greater decarbonization of residential and commercial buildings.S Environment, ELiias
SB 5126Climate commitment actConcerning the Washington climate commitment act.S Environment, ECarlyle
SB 5165 (HB 1135)Transp. budget 2021-2023Making transportation appropriations for the 2021-2023 fiscal biennium.S TransportationHobbs
SB 5168Electric utility advisoryConcerning renewable and nonemitting resources analysis and advisory opinions.S Environment, EShort
SSB 5174Wind turbine blade recyclingProviding for the recycling of wind turbine blades.S Ways & MeansWilson
SB 5206Energy facility evaluationEliminating expedited processing of an alternative energy resource facility fueled by solar energy on certain designated lands before the energy facility site evaluation council.S Environment, EWarnick
SB 5231 (2SHB 1091)Transportation fuel/carbonReducing greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the carbon intensity of transportation fuel.S Environment, EStanford
SB 5244Nuclear reactor productionEncouraging the production of advanced nuclear reactors, small modular reactors, and components through the invest in Washington act.S Environment, EBrown
SB 5256 (HB 1204)Transp. electrificationConcerning the electrification of transportation.S Environment, ELiias
SB 5308Hybrid vehicle feesReducing certain transportation electrification fees on hybrid vehicles.S TransportationShort
SB 5373Carbon pollutionConcerning carbon pollution.S Environment, ELovelett
SB 5415Energy facil site eval cnclConcerning the energy facility site evaluation council.S Environment, ELovelett

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