Sen. Billig, Speaker Jinkins: Three initiatives will have hearings, three will not

OLYMPIA – Senate Majority Leader Andy Billig and Speaker of the House Laurie Jinkins announced Friday that public hearings will be held on Initiative 2113 (police pursuits), I-2111 (state income tax) and I-2081 (parental rights). The lawmakers also confirmed I-2117, a repeal of the Climate Commitment Act, I-2109, a repeal of the capital gains tax and I-2124, an opt-out of Washington’s long-term care retirement program that would effectively end the program, will not receive hearings or floor action, and will go directly to the November ballot.

The House and Senate will hold joint public hearings on I-2111, I-2081 and I-2113 on Feb. 27th and 28th. Exact times will be confirmed next week.

“The three initiatives we are not taking action on would have a dire effect on the day to day lives of every single Washingtonian. These initiatives would dramatically decrease quality of life and devastate progress on K-12 education, childcare, clean air, clean water, climate action, and aging with dignity – matters that are important to people across the state. The fiscal notes on I-2109 and I-2117 confirm this and we expect the final fiscal note on I-2124 to reveal the same.

“There is not support for any idea that would fundamentally weaken childcare, early learning and K-12 education, reduce efforts to protect clean air and clean water, or remove the state’s program that will help seniors to age in place and live with dignity.

“Washington voters will hear a lot between now and November on any initiatives that end up on the ballot. It will be up to them to decide what sort of state they want to live in. For example, they’ll have the chance to choose between tax cuts for the super-rich or affordable childcare for families across Washington.

“The effect of the remaining three initiatives is less obvious. Hearings will allow us to gather more information and hear from the public and others so that we can make informed decisions. These initiatives will have a lasting effect on all Washingtonians. It is crucial we have every bit of information available and at our disposal so that we fully understand the consequences – both intended and not – of these initiatives and the ways they will affect the lives of every Washingtonian.”