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Feb. 28th 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 28, 2011.

Feb. 28th Hot List - State House

POSSIBLE HOUSE FLOOR ACTION

HB 1071: Creating a complete streets grant program.

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • This legislation would position Washington strongly to compete for future federal funds designated for Complete Streets. More than 100 agencies nationwide have implemented Complete Streets policies, including 16 states and six municipalities in Washington.
  • Rather than applying a cookie cutter design to every corridor, planners work with communities to develop project that are appropriate for various functions of the roadway. The result is a streetscape that is safer and more accessible for all users that promotes livable communities.

SHB 1186: Concerning requirements under the state's oil spill program.

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • This bill is designed to ensure that the state is well prepared for a major oil spill. Requires oil companies to invest in state-of-art spill response equipment.
  • Provides training and equipment for commercial fishermen so that they can help respond in the event of a spill.

HB 1478: Delaying or modifying certain regulatory and statutory requirements affecting cities and counties.

POSITION: OPPOSE

  • This bill will derail the planned adoption of the Phase II Stormwater Permit which is critical for the recovery of Puget Sound and other polluted waters across the state. Please remove sections 11-13 of the bill.
  • Last year we were willing to support a three year delay (from 2011 to 2014) of the next GMA update, out of respect for funding situation at the state and local levels. This bill effectively makes this delay permanent. Please remove section 2 from the bill.

HB 1489: Limiting the use of fertilizer containing phosphorus. (a.k.a. Clean Fertilizers, Healthier Lakes and Rivers).

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • Phosphorous from residential lawn fertilizers is a major water quality pollutant that if not managed could require local governments to spend millions on wastewater treatment plant upgrades.
  • This bill manages the sale of lawn fertilizers containing phosphorus and has the support of Scott's MiracleGrow, Avista Corp., Inland Paper Company, Fred Meyer, The Retail Association, local governments and environmental groups.

HB 1536: Providing a congestion reduction charge to fund the operational and capital needs of transit agencies.

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • This bill preserves jobs, reduces congestion, and protects the environment by authorizing local governments and transit agencies in Puget Sound to impose a temporary congestion reduction charge to provide emergency funding for our critical transit service.
  • Transit service faces a funding crisis in Washington State. Plummeting sales tax revenue is forcing transit agencies to slash service despite record-setting ridership.

HB 1700: Modifying the requirements related to designing various transportation projects.

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • This bill simply allows flexibility for cities, counties, and developers to use updated guidelines for designing for bike and pedestrian uses.
  • This bill will improve public safety, protect our environment, and promote healthy communities.

HB 1702: Establishing a process for the payment of impact fees through provisions stipulated in recorded covenants.

POSITION: OPPOSE

  • Delaying impact fee collection will hurt a community's ability to build new streets, fire stations, schools, and parks. For example, a school needs this money immediately after the building permit is issued so they can be ready to handle new students as the new residents move in; the same is true for other infrastructure improvements.
  • Impact fees were created to ensure that in many ways, new growth helps pay its way. HB 1702 makes the impact fee process more expensive and less certain. We are joined in opposition to this bill by the cities, counties, and schools districts.

SHB 1721: Preventing storm water pollution from coal tar sealants.

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • This bill will protect public health by banning the use of the highly-polluting coal tar sealants on playgrounds and parking lots. USGS studies have confirmed that coal tar sealants are polluting waterbodies in Washington State.
  • Coal tar sealants are no longer used by WSDOT. Home Depot and Lowes have taken it off their shelves. Because cost effective alternatives are readily available, Washington businesses have not opposed this bill.

SHB 1785: Limiting the use of certain antifouling paints.

POSITION: SUPPORT

  • Phases out the use of copper antifouling paints on boats which are a significant source of pollution in Puget Sound.
  • Encourages the use of salmon safe alternatives which are now available.

HB 1952: Streamlining the state environmental policy act process.

POSITION: OPPOSE

  • Will exempt a large number of projects from environmental review under SEPA, even when these projects will negatively affect neighboring property.
  • Undermines public involvement and consideration of environmentally friendly alternatives to a project.

 

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