The Environmental Priorities Coalition, which includes environmental groups such as the Washington Environmental Council and the Sierra Club, and faith groups such as Faith Action Network, met recently to set priorities. A tentative list of 2023 priorities include salmon recovery, housing affordability and density, recycling, water, forests and land use.
There are still issues pending from the 2022 session. The following is a list of top priorities for 2022, that may recur as bills in 2023:
Salmon Recovery (SB 5665)— From the coast to Puget Sound to the Snake River, bold action to recover endangered salmon populations across the state.
Unfortunately, this bill is dead for the 2022 session because of landowner opposition. It may be revised and reintroduced at the 2023 session.
Fighting Sprawl to Protect Climate (HB 1099 and SB 5042) — Futurewise-led Washington Can’t Wait campaign to pass two bills that will revise the Growth Management Act to better plan for climate and close development loopholes that exacerbate urban sprawl. SB 5042 has passed both the Senate and House and was signed by the governor but 1099 has not been forwarded to the Governor for signature. It will be reintroduced in 2023.
Clean Buildings (HB 1767 and SB5666) — Buildings are WA’s fastest growing source of climate pollution. Action is planned to expand the availability of incentives for utility customers to switch from fossil fuels to clean electric appliances. Both bills failed to pass and may be reintroduced.
In addition, the following bill failed in 2022 but could be 2023 priorities:
Housing Equity and Proximity to Transit (HB 1782) – create additional middle housing near transit and in areas traditionally dedicated to single-family detached housing.
Hearings: January 18, 2022: House Committee on Local Government: Hearing Notes Here
Senate Committee on Housing & Local Government has approved the Senate companion bill SB 5670, but both bills missed the March 4 cutoff and are dead for the 2022 session but could be reintroduced in 2023.