February 6, 2024

Mid-Week Update: Fiscal cutoff spells end for more bills

By Marie Sullivan,

Monday, February 5 was the final day for bills to pass out of the fiscal committees in the chamber in which they started. The exceptions to this are revenue bills and any bills labeled Necessary to Implement the Budget or NTIB. And, as a reminder, no bill is ever officially done until the gavel falls on the final day of the session. And some bills that are good ideas but didn’t make the cutoff could show up as budget provisos.

Attention this week through February 13 turns to floor action in both the Senate and House when bills must advance from their respective Rules committees and be placed on the floor for consideration. We are on Day 30, or the halfway point of the session. Committee public hearings will resume on Wednesday, February 14.

Here’s an overview of the bills (in numerical order) that are considered “dead,” after fiscal committees finished their work on February 5. All bills can be searched and read by using this Bill Info search tool:

  • HB 1914 would have required school districts to provide specific information to parents with special education services; required districts to demonstrate burden of proof when identifying students for IEPs; and would have required ESDs to employ or contract for certain professional services to assist school districts with special education services. SB 5883, requiring a burden of proof bill for special education due process hearings, is still alive.
  • HB 1922 would have established a grant program for the purchase and installation of vape detectors in public schools.
  • HB 2017 would have created a school construction assistance grant program for districts with more than 1,001 students that had a history of failing school bonds.
  • HB 2018 would have required school districts to restrict mobile device use by public school students.
  • HB 2053 would have codified the 9th grade success grant program.
  • HB 2058 would have required all school districts, charter schools, and state-tribal education compact schools to provide breakfast and lunch without charge to any requesting students, beginning with the 2024-25 school year. The companion, SB 5964, didn’t pass out of the policy committee. This could become a budget proviso.
  • HB 2092 would have created a school construction assistance grant program for early learning and before/after school care programs.
  • SHB 2130 would have extended the provision of special education and related services to students with disabilities until the end of the school year in which the students turn 22, or high school graduation, whichever occurs first.
  • HB 2175 would have removed the 15% enrollment cap on students to receive state-funded special education services.
  • HB 2212 would have increased the prototypical school funding model for school principals, assistant principals, and other certificated building-level administrators, beginning in the 2024-25 school year.
  • HB 2215 and SSB 5956 would have allowed school districts that receive regionalization to increase their maximum per-pupil limit by the same regionalization factor on their enrichment levies.
  • HB 2223 would have increased the allocation for certificated teacher librarians, and required any district that chose to accept the additional allocation to spend it only on a certificated teacher librarian.
  • HB 2238 would have imposed a new 11% tax on each retail sale of ammunition.
  • HB 2297 would have required new school construction to install solar energy systems on new school buildings.
  • HB 2309 would have established the Washington 13 free guarantee program, which would have provided up to 45 credits of tuition-free community or technical college to eligible students, regardless of income. The bill could possibly become a budget proviso as a pilot program.
  • HB 2326 would have required the state to fund high school AP, IB and Cambridge exam fees.
  • HB 2360 would have created the Washington digital empowerment and workforce inclusion act to support Washingtonians in achieving verifiable levels of digital literacy and accessing information technology and information technology-enabled careers.
  • HB 2380 would have increased average paraeducator salaries by $7 per hour and be adjusted by the same salary inflationary increases and for regionalization. OSPI request bill. (SB 6082 didn’t advance from the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee by the policy cutoff.)
  • HB 2387 was also a paraeducator/classified allocation ratio increase bill, offered by Rep. Skyler Rude, R-Walla Walla.
  • HB 2404 would have created a grant program to support post pandemic learning recovery programs for students through academic interventions.
  • HB 2448 would have established a grant program within OSPI to provide assistance to school districts for the personnel and other costs associated with applying for grants funded by the state of Washington and grants from other public or private sources from which the school district may be eligible.
  • SB 5823 would have asked voters to reduce the threshold from 60% to simple majority to pass bonds.
  • SB 5978 would have authorized OSPI to act as a guarantor for a county when the county provides a loan to a school district. This bill was targeted to help the Marysville School District, in particular.
  • SB 5999 would have made changes to income eligibility for the maximum Washington College Grant (up to 70% of median family income), and entitled WCG students who are receiving the maximum WCG award but who are not College Bound Scholarship recipients to receive a $500 Bridge Grant, which is an additional annual stipend for expenses beyond tuition and fees.
  • SB 6012 would have directed the PESB to develop a list of changes to the educational system in statute and rule during the last 10 years that might require pedagogical changes in teacher preparation programs and would have directed PESB to convene various work groups to identify what teacher preparation programs must be providing candidates to prepare them for the modern classroom and for programs to develop a gap analysis and action plan. Under the bill, PESB would have been required to compile a summary of the findings from the group by March 1, 2025 for legislative review.
  • SSB 6016 would have created a green energy community fund to support school districts and nonprofit organizations that service the communities where renewable energy projects are located.
  • SB 6018 would have established an early learning coordinator at each of the nine ESDs.
  • SB 6048 would have provided an additional $1.05 million to the Education Ombuds to fund at least one special education ombuds to serve each ESD region (RCW 43.06B.010(5)). This could become a budget proviso.
  • SB 6123 would establish a minimum state average allocation for salaries for classified administrative staff at $91,733 beginning with the 2024-25 school year, to be adjusted by inflation.
  • SB 6216 would have directed OSPI to provide state-level coordination to help schools better identify and connect students to behavioral health supports; would have established a regional school-based mental and behavioral health student assistance program through the nine ESDs; and created a grant program for school districts to implement a plan for recognition, screening, and response to emotional or behavioral distress in students.
  • SB 6254 would have expanded the financial aid completion program at community & technical colleges to all nine ESD (expanded from the pilot program of two ESDs) and would have allowed the SBCTC to contract with outside entities including community-based organizations or tribal organizations. Would have made other changes to improve financial aid and enrollment specialists.
  • SB 6300 would have expanded the demonstration of financial need for Washington College Grant eligibility to include students who participate in Washington’s Basic Food Program, the Food Assistance Program, or Apple Health for Kids.
Category: Advocacy , Legislative

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