Legislative and Policy Update November 2023

The 2023 Legislative Session proved to be another busy year of bill tracking for ICSEW’s Legislative & Policy Subcommittee. During the longer budget session, ICSEW members tracked 17 bills covering a breadth of issues that directly affect state employees. Of the 17 bills that were selected to share information out to the general membership, six passed session. That is an impressive 35%!

The passed legislation concerns multiple matters including: addressing the collection/sharing/selling of consumer health data; penalties for publishing unauthorized personal identifying information; enacting comprehensive protection for domestic violence victims; the creation of the Hope Card program, and much more. There is still opportunity for the other 11 bills that did not pass the 2023 Session to be reintroduced this coming session.

The 2024 Session begins Monday, January 8th. This is the “even year” of the biennium – and the shorter of the sessions (60 days vs. 105 days). Sponsors can pre-file bills for the upcoming session beginning December 4th. Leg.wa.gov is the Washington State Legislature’s site for bill tracking and all things legislatively related. This site offers information on your local legislators, as well as committee meeting schedules, and opportunities for public hearings.

As a state employee, it is important to remember that we should not use state resources to research and track legislation of a personal interest. We do encourage you to utilize these resources on your personal time to learn more and incorporate your voice!

ICSEW recently offered a training opportunity to learn more about the Legislative Process with our guest speaker, Laura Love, Legislative Information Center (LIC) manager. We are happy to share that we have another opportunity to learn with Laura on December 12th from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. Please visit ICSEW website (icsew.wa.gov) for a link to the meeting.

And for anyone interested in joining the Leg & Policy Subcommittee, please contact co-chair Keri O’Connell at kerio@dor.wa.gov or Stephanie Goedecke at stephanie.goedecki@esd.wa.gov. We plan to begin meeting every-other week once session begins and would enjoy having you there!