Public Policy

Creating lasting improvements in health equity means understanding legislation and policy. Our work on the health policy forefront has significantly advanced safe and drug-free schools, school health and fitness standards in schools, provided critical advisement to elected officials, and effectively mobilized Washington citizens in service of policies that support prevention.

Learn more about our work with the Prevention Alliance.

Stay informed on all thing health policy! Subscribe to our Health Policy Newsletter, bringing you weekly updates on the 2017 Legislative Session. 

Special Edition Health Policy News You Can Use, June 3rd 2015

Since the Washington State Legislature concluded their first special session without action on a 2015‐2017 operating budget, capital budget or transportation revenue package they are now in a second 30 day special session.   On May 28th, the final day of the first 30‐day special session, Senate Republicans released their latest operating budget. The Senate Republicans' budget proposal increases spending on higher education, state parks, drought relief and wages for caregivers in assisted living facilities. It adds $66 million to pay for collectively bargained state employee pay raises,  contingent on a new bill requiring contract negotiations to be open to the public. The Senate Ways and Means Committee voted their Republican budget bill out of committee on Thursday. See this link for the budget details.  For more special session and budget info, click on the link for the full Health Policy News You Can Use

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use_ Special Edition June 3, 2015.pdf

Health Policy News - Final 2015 Regular Session Edition

Dear Friends,

With operating budget negotiations stalled, the legislature adjourned Sine Die on Friday. This was two days earlier than Sunday April 26th the scheduled 105th day of the regular legislative session. Governor Inslee will call the legislature back into special session on Wednesday, April 29th. Budget negotiators have been invited to meet with Governor Inslee on Monday, April 27th in advance of the start of special session.  

More in the full version of this final, regular edition of Health Policy News You Can Use!

Thanks for joining us this 2015 Legislative Session!

- Your Healthy Policy News Team (Erin, Julie, Whitney and Friends) 

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use_ Final 2015 Regular Session Edition.pdf

Health Policy News: Transportation funding updates - April 20, 2015

Last week the House passed a 16 year transportation revenue packageThe grid below shows the House proposed levels for Safe Routes to School and Bike/Pedestrian funding. Advocates are thanking both House and Senate Transportation leaders, asking for support of these initial funding levels as well as an increase for Safe Routes to School projects. A shout out to our partners American Heart Association, Childhood Obesity Prevention Coalition and Washington Bikes for their advocacy work this session on Safe Routes to School and Bike/Pedestrian funding. 

For more on the transportation funding package, and updates on e-cigs & vaping. Click to view the entire Health Policy News You Can Use, for the week of April 20th. 

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use_ Transportation funding updates.pdf

Health Policy News: Budget Update - April 13, 2015

We are entering the fourteenth week of the regular legislative session. Two weeks to go until "Sine Die." This Wednesday, April 15th at 5:00pm, is the next cutoff ‐ the last day to consider opposite house bills, except those with the highly coveted Necessary to Implement the Budget (NTIB) designation.    For 'What We're Watching' and more budget updates, click on the link to the full Health Policy News You Can Use. 

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use_ Budget Update.pdf

Health Policy News - April 6, 2015

Welcome to the thirteenth week of the legislative session! This Tuesday, April 7th will be the next cutoff to pass bills out of committee. Last Thursday, The House and Senate debated their proposed 2015-17 budgets on their respective chamber floors. The House passed its proposed $38.8 billion budget on Thursday afternoon 51-47, along party lines. The Senate held an overnight session Thursday night, working for more than 10 hours, adjourning at 4:15 a.m. Friday morning.

For What We're Watching this week and more, see the full Health Policy News You Can Use for the week of April 6.

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use April 6.pdf

Health Policy News - April 2, 2015

Welcome to this special mid-week Health Policy News. The Senate Republicans introduced their $38 million 2015-17 budget on Tuesday. The budget increases funding over the biennium by $4.1 billion from current spending. The proposed budget has no tax increases, but relies on the projected $3 billion in increased revenue due to economic growth, budget reductions, moving $325 million in expected retail marijuana tax revenue to the general fund and allowing several tax breaks to expire.  

For more information, click on the pdf link below. 

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use April 2.pdf

Health Policy News - March 30, 2015

Welcome to the twelfth week of the legislative session. It's another busy week in Olympia, and Wednesday, April 1st is the cutoff for bills out of policy committees in the opposite house at 5:00pm. The House operating budget for the 2015-17 biennium totaled nearly $39 billion. As expected, $1.5 billion in new revenue sources were proposed, including a new capital gains tax and changes to the business and occupation tax. House Appropriations Chairman Ross Hunter stated he believes the budget will fully fund the McCleary decision as mandated by the state Supreme Court. The budget will also provide more state hospital and community beds for the mentally ill. You can view the full House proposal here. For highlights of the House budget so far, see the full Health Policy News You Can Use.

Connect To These Resources:

Health Policy News You Can Use March 30 2015.pdf

2015 Capital and Operating Budget Insights

On Friday, March the 27th at 11:30 a.m., the House released its nearly $39 billion general fund operating budget for the 2015-2017 biennium. You can view the proposal here. As anticipated, new revenue sources are in the budget for the amount of nearly $1.5 billion. Here is a breakdown of some of what we've been monitoring, with additions from the Senate capital and operations budgets as well as the transportation revenue package:

 House BudgetSenate Budget
Healthiest Next Generation (DOH only)              246,000 0
Grants Program/I-502               6,000,0000
Public Health Hotline/I-502                     410,0000
Education Campaigns/I-502                10,000,0002,450,000
Youth Tobacco & E-Cigarette Prevention                   1,400,0001,400,000
Healthy Kids - Healthy Schools Grants (Scratch Cooking-HB 1164; Hydration Stations)           2,000,0000
Breakfast after the Bell implementation grants           2,950,0000
Housing Trust Fund        80,000,00065,000,000
Safe Routes to Schools56,000,00011,500,000

For more comparison of the House and Senate Capital budgets, click here

Of note: 

Healthiest Next Generation - One-time funding is provided for 1 FTE at DOH to coordinate the work of the Healthiest Next Generation Initiative.

Grants Program/I-502 - Funding is provided for a grants program to prevent and reduce youth marijuana use, consistent with the provisions of Initiative 502. (Dedicated Marijuana Account-State)

Public Health Hotline/I-502 - Funding is provided for a marijuana use public health hotline, consistent with the provisions of Initiative 502. (Dedicated Marijuana Account-State)

Education Campaigns/I-502 - Funding is provided for media-based education campaigns for youth and adults that provide medically and scientifically accurate information about the health and safety risks of marijuana use, consistent with the provisions of Initiative 502. (Dedicated Marijuana Account-State)

Youth Tobacco & E-Cigarette Prev - One-time funding is provided for activities to help prevent tobacco use, e-cigarette use, and vaping. Prevention activities will target youth and populations with a high incidence of tobacco use. (Tobacco Prevention and Control Account-State)

Housing Trust - Funding provided for competitive loans and grants for affordable housing projects statewide that will produce, at a minimum, a total of 1,900 homes and 500 seasonal beds.


Subscribe to Public Policy