Dear Friends and Neighbors,
When young people commit serious crimes, we confine them in state institutions under the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration. However, compelling research shows that institutionalizing young people is actually counterproductive to their successful reentry into the community. In this week’s GoodMinute, I discuss legislation I have introduced to create the Community Transition Services Program to help achieve our goal of helping young people return to proper functioning without being involved with the criminal justice system again. Learn more below:
House proposes historic $5.7 billion construction budget to rebuild economy
The 2021-23 capital budget proposed in the House would break the record for total investments and put tens of thousands of people to work rebuilding the economy.
Federal funding helps, with the proposed budget (HB 1080) including $400 million in federal funding for investments in water, sewer, and broadband service along with $189 million for critical capital budget projects enabling work, education, health monitoring, and other items related to responding to the pandemic.
A total of $48.5 million would go toward grants and loans for early learning facilities. Public schools would receive $969.9 million, while community colleges get $299.8 million and public universities are set for $678.9 million in construction funding. The largest project is the construction of the Behavioral Health Teaching Facility at the University of Washington ($191.3 million).
This proposal also sets new records for investments in housing ($240 million), early learning ($48 million), and broadband internet access ($155 million).
Full details about the budget are available here. Here in the 45th District, the House budget includes money for several projects.
Kirkland Arts Center
The Kirkland Arts Center is a community hub that includes gallery space, innovative classes, and event spaces. The House capital budget includes money for maintenance and upgrades at the Kirkland Arts Center.
Lake Washington Institute of Technology
The Lake Washington Institute of Technology is the only technical college in the 45th Legislative District. It offers bachelor’s and associate degrees designed to get people into the workforce. The capital budget includes money for maintenance and repair, and important new funds to build the proposed Center for Design. This new, immersive facility will focus merging traditional STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) training with art instruction. This will help position students to be employed at the many global technology firms located near the campus, including Microsoft and Nintendo.
Equitable care for pregnant patients
No matter where a patient lives or seeks medical treatment, they should trust that they can get the care they need, when they need it. SB 5140 will bring Washington state an essential step closer to making that a reality.
For years pregnant patients in our state have been denied necessary care or had that care delayed when facing pregnancy complications, miscarriages, and ectopic pregnancies. These patients, who are already going through so much, experience refusals of care that are harmful and can be life threatening. No pregnant patient in Washington should have to drive hours to get needed care, nor should a miscarrying patient be turned away from a hospital when they need urgent medical treatment. Yet these situations keep happening in our state.
Hospital policies that serve no medical purpose and deny pregnant patients access to needed care exacerbate inequities. These policies are discriminatory, unsafe, and disproportionately harm women, rural communities, and patients with limited economic resources. The House voted to pass this bill to reduce inequities and protect pregnant patients by ensuring our health care providers can provide evidence-based medically necessary care to their patients.
As always, please reach out if you have questions, comments, or ideas.
All best wishes,
Representative, 45th District
Washington State Legislature