This week on “The Impact”:
We dive into the details of the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus Operational Budget proposal for 2017-19. From the overhaul of state funding for K-12 education, to mental health spending and collective bargaining agreements for state employees, we’ll break down the plan.
“This is in many ways an historic year. And if we get this right, and I think we have, the decision we make this year in the state of Washington will have a positive impact this year and decades into the future,” said Sen. John Braun, R – Centralia.
You’ll also hear the reaction from Democratic state leaders, including Governor Jay Inslee.
“The most important task for lawmakers this year is fully funding education. Fully and amply funding the education of our children and doing it in a way that didn’t hurt people in the state of Washington. This budget by the Republicans fails on both counts,” said Governor Jay Inslee (D).
Later we spotlight the debate over two separate bills to create the Washington Voting Rights Act. The bills have identical titles, but very different implications. You’ll hear from the sponsors of both bills.
“My bill more closely resembles the very good federal Voting Rights Act which has different criteria you have to meet to show that you’re discriminating against your voters and/or harming them. The difference between the two bills mainly is that in the Representative’s bill, every city is guilty of their definition of discrimination. And so you just bring a lawsuit, you wait out the time period and then you take control of the redistricting process, because it has no standards, everybody’s guilty,” said Sen. Mark Miloscia, R – Federal Way. “The most controversial thing in Washington politics is who gets to control the lines, the redistricting lines. And that’s why the Federal Voting Rights Act is a very good process. It has criteria. There isn’t a threat of a lawsuit taking money away from the city.”
“We need more updated legislation. We know that cities, counties, and school districts are facing issues and potentially many lawsuits. We’ve seen it in Pasco. We’ve seen it in Yakima. It’s costing taxpayers millions of dollars and so this legislation is a recognition that we need to give them tools and safe harbor so that changes can be made to better represent the communities that they want to serve,” said Rep. Mia Gregerson, D – Des Moines. “Even this bill has two of three of those indicators and very specifically so because the Federal Voting Rights is so old, 1965 and there have been some changes to that even, that it no longer is relevant.”
Wealwo reflect on a tragic anniversary, three years after the massive SR 530 landslide claimed 43 lives in rural Snohomish County.
You’ll hear what state agencies are doing to try and identify risks to prevent future tragedies from natural disasters.