Dear friends and neighbors,
After wrapping up the 2021 Legislative Session, my colleagues and I were able to take a quick recess to spend time with friends and family and catch up on much needed sleep. Now, we’re back in our districts and communities, ensuring our state’s new laws are implemented properly and have an equitable impact on every Washingtonian. This is my first interim and I’m eager to dive into a new set of issue areas that impact our district and develop my legislative agenda for next session.
Read more on what this interim will look like below.
What is the interim?
Interim in the Legislature is the time between legislative sessions where members are not convening to vote on bills and instead have time to prepare for the next session, meet with community groups and stakeholders, work with constituents, and research public policy. It begins after the last day of the legislative session and lasts until the next session begins.
If you would like to view committee work plans this interim, click here. On that page, you will select the committee and then click on Current Committee Reports and Issues. You can also view what bills each committee passed during the 2021 Session here.
What are my interim priorities?
In this session, I focused on legislation that addressed police accountability and criminal justice reform, access expansion to necessary resources such as broadband, and ensured a strong economic recovery from the pandemic. Next session, I plan to build on this work and continue working on criminal justice reform as well as expand my legislative priorities into affordable housing and income inequality.
Our district is feeling the impacts of the regional housing and homelessness crisis and it is imperative that we keep people housed and expand economic opportunity and access to housing for low-income and working families in our district.
I also plan to work with city and county officials to monitor the implementation of new laws and advocate on behalf of local district issues.
What bills that didn’t make it to the floor will I prioritize during the interim?
HB 1344 gives incarcerated people serving long sentences for crimes committed when they were under 25-years-old a chance for early release. Neuroscience has proven that our brains don’t fully develop until our mid-20s, yet our justice system criminalizes younger offenders the same as fully matured adults. This bill provides them a second chance, an opportunity for reform, and most of all, a better future.
HB 1413 would have our state join many others in excluding an individual’s prior juvenile history when they face felony offenses. Points from prior juvenile dispositions are a significant contributor to racially disproportionate sentencing and incarceration rates for adult felonies. This bill incorporates our latest understanding of adolescent brain science and acknowledges youth as a mitigating factor in criminal behavior.
Learn more about the national movement and science behind raising the age for juvenile offenders here.
I will continue to work with my assigned committees, conducting research, setting priorities, and addressing the needs of our district. Below are links for you to view what my committees have planned later this year.
Most of all, I want to spend this interim learning more about you and the community I proudly serve. Because of you, I am in this position, so as we see more normalcy returning to our daily lives, I look forward to meeting you and other community members and hearing your thoughts on what needs to be prioritized in Olympia to help our district.
Last month, Gov. Inslee announced that he plans to lift nearly all COVID-19 restrictions in Washington on June 30th. This announcement came as a result of community members like you taking the needed precautions to help stop the spread of COVID and a strong vaccine distribution effort which to date has vaccinated over half of Washington—the highest vaccination rate in the country.
Below are the expected COVID-19 guidelines starting next month:
- Vaccine Verification – Recommended, but not required, for large indoor events
- Capacity Limitations – No restrictions (except large indoor events)
- Physical Distancing – No requirements
- Facial Coverings – Follow current applicable requirements as outlined in:
- Travelers – Follow CDC recommendations and Proclamations 20-83.2 – Restrictions on Travelers
Are you vaccinated? Now’s your chance to be rewarded for it!
Earlier this month, Gov. Inslee rolled out incentives for vaccinated Washingtonians. It’s a new program to encourage people to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
- Lottery drawings up to $2 million
- Sports tickets and gear
- Gift cards
- Airline tickets
Click here to learn more about this opportunity.
Still need to get vaccinated?
To find the closest site near you, click here and enter your zip code.
Also, don’t forget that ages 12 and older can now receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
King County’s website provides you more info on where to find vaccination sites, free rides and childcare, and more.
Looking for Community Advocacy Opportunities?
- King County Coalition Partner Organizations
- Living Well Kent – South King County Health Coalition
- City of Tukwila Community Connectors Program