Feb. 21st Hot List - State House
This is the Legislative Hot List for the State House. It outlines the environmental community's positions on important environmental House bills and budget provisions for the week of February 21, 2011.
POSSIBLE HOUSE FLOOR ACTION
HB 1622: Authorizing rural conservation development demonstration projects.
- This bill will allow a new "city" in northwest Snohomish County with up to 1,600 housing units. This new city will generate large amounts of traffic as its ~3,000 people go about their daily lives. Given the out of the way location, it lacks the transportation facilities needed to accommodate the new traffic and much of the burden will fall on state facilities, such as I-5.
- This new city will
transform a rural area into a city, adversely affecting its neighbors
who will suffer urban style traffic jams with none of the benefits of
being in a city. A big developer will benefit; the small neighboring
property owners will suffer. The bill is opposed by most area residents.
SHB 1721: Preventing storm water pollution from coal tar sealants.
- Sealants are used to beautify asphalt surfaces. Coal tar-based sealants contain highly carcinogenic chemicals, but safe, cost-effective alternatives are readily available and widely used in Washington.
bill will protect public health by banning the use of the
highly-polluting coal tar sealants on playgrounds and parking lots.
HB 1886: Implementing recommendations of the Ruckelshaus Center process.
- Implements the agreement worked out between the counties and agricultural & environmental interests after 3.5 years of negotiations at the Ruckelshaus Center. We ask that amendments only be supported if they are requested jointly by counties, farmers and environmentalists in order to preserve the agreement.
- Creates an alternative to the GMA for protecting critical areas and maintaining ag viability, by creating a voluntary stewardship program. We are all seeking federal funding to pay for the program.
HOUSE COMMITTEE ACTION
HB 1469: Concerning landscape conservation and local infrastructure.
Ways & Means: Hearing & Possible Executive Session
- This bill will empower our cities to make much-needed infrastructure improvements in exchange for working together to conserve potentially hundreds of thousands of acres of working farm and forest land.
- The bill, brought forward by Cascade Land Conservancy, is supported by a broad coalition including the environmental community, various cities & counties, Master Builders Association of King & Snohomish, Weyerhaueser, etc.
HB 1662: Addressing appeal and permit procedures under the shoreline management act.
Ways & Means: Possible Executive Session
POSITION: SUPPORT the FITZGIBBON AMENDMENT
- This bill changes the appeals mechanism of the Shoreline Management Act. Instead of appealing to the Shoreline Hearings Board, citizens would appeal to Superior Court. This change will cost both property owners and the state more money.
- The amendment will keep SMA permit appeals at the Shoreline Hearings Board, eliminating extra fiscal costs to the state and counties. Additionally, the amendment enables the SHB to allow parts of a project not affected by a permit appeal to begin construction.
HB 1735: Concerning creating clean water jobs through storm water pollution funding (a.k.a. Clean Water Jobs Act of 2011)
Ways and Means: Possible Executive Session
- The most significant jobs creator in front of the legislature, this bill will raise new revenue for clean water infrastructure by imposing a pollution fee upon oil, pesticides and other toxic stormwater contaminants.
- Billions of dollars are needed to address toxic runoff. Pollution fees are a fair and publicly popular solution that would fund projects that will reduce flooding and improve our communities.