As deadlines approach for bills to be passed from their House committees to survive in the 2022 legislative session, Rep. Gina Mosbrucker, R-Goldendale, is working hard to advance her prime-sponsored legislation through their respective committees.
Two of Mosbrucker’s bills have passed the state House of Representatives and are in the Senate.
House Bill 1357 would require county auditors to mail a statewide and local voters’ pamphlet to registered Washington voters overseas, including military voters. The measure is not an unfunded mandate, according to the Office of the Secretary of State. The measure passed the House unanimously on Jan. 12 and is now in the Senate Government and Elections Committee.
House Bill 1622 would increase the availability of sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) education in rural and underserved areas. SANE nurses play a critical role in the detailed forensic investigations that are necessary for the prosecution of sex crimes. The bill would require the Washington State University College of Nursing to establish a SANE online and clinical training program and a regional SANE leader pilot program. The measure passed unanimously from the House floor on Wednesday, Jan. 26.
Other Mosbrucker bills making their way through House committees include:
House Bill 1497 – Telephone solicitors – Would prevent telephone solicitors from making calls before 8 a.m. or after 5 p.m., no selling of the called party’s name and information, removal of the called party from the solicitor’s list upon request, and no further calls within at least one year after that request has been made. Passed the House Consumer Protection and Business Committee on Jan. 20, this bill is in the House Rules Committee, awaiting to be pulled to the House floor for a vote.
House Bill 1571 – Missing, murdered indigenous persons and survivors of human trafficking – Also known as the “Bring them home bill,” this measure would also allow tribal members to pray over a deceased indigenous person without compromising the scene before an autopsy is conducted. And it creates a receiving center to provide help for trafficked victims. This bill passed the House Public Safety Committee on Thursday, Jan. 20 and is now in the House Appropriations Committee.
House Bill 1621 would require the state Department of Health (DOH) to establish a stipend program of up to $2,500 per licensed nurse to cover fees and costs necessary to become a certified sexual assault nurse examiner (SANEs). It also would require DOH to establish a hospital grant program to increase access to certified SANEs for hospitals without sufficient access. SANE nurses play a critical role in the detailed forensic investigations that are necessary for the prosecution of sex crimes. This bill passed the House Health Care and Wellness Committee and is now awaiting a public hearing on Feb. 1 in the House Appropriations Committee.
House Bill 1623 – Electric grid adequacy – The measure would address the real risk in Washington of rolling blackouts and inadequate electric supplies. It requires the Washington Department of Commerce and the Utilities and Transportation Commission to hold annual stakeholder meetings through 2029 to discuss the adequacy of the state’s energy resources for meeting electric needs and address steps to meet those needs. This bill passed the House Environment and Energy Committee on Friday, Jan. 13. It is now on the House floor awaiting a vote.
House Bill 1624 – Modifying the motorcycle safety education board – Adding women, east/west members for equity. A public hearing was held, Jan. 18, in the House Transportation Committee.
House Bill 1715 – Sentencing Guidelines Commission – This bill addresses membership of the state’s Sentencing Guidelines Commission. Passed from the House Public Safety Committee, this bill is now on the House floor awaiting a vote.
House Bill 1737 – Public Safety – This is the omnibus “Safe Washington” bill that addresses fixes to the police reform legislation from last year that went too far. In total, the Safe Washington plan is a comprehensive package of nearly 50 House and Senate public safety bills that also addresses the state Supreme Court Blake decision that struck down Washington’s felony drug possession law; and cracks down on the increase in violent gang and drug-related crimes. It also includes measures aimed at putting victims and the safety of Washington’s communities first by dealing with human trafficking, prioritizing investigations of missing indigenous persons, strengthening the felony DUI law, and combatting domestic violence and sexual assault. In addition, Safe Washington seeks to increase penalties of property crimes, including retail and catalytic converter theft; and it would reform the Department of Corrections to reverse efforts to release criminals back on the streets. House Bill 1737 is in the House Public Safety Committee.
House Bill 1844 – Creating the offense of unlawful branding of another – This bill would make it a class B felony to mark another person’s body with a subdermal implant, tattoo, or body art, with the knowledge that the mark is intended to be used to track the person or mark the person for ownership as part of a plan or scheme to engage in trafficking of the person. A public hearing is scheduled for Friday, Jan. 28 in the House Public Safety Committee.
House Bill 1845 – Body camera grants – Would help small police departments who are unable to afford body cams but want this proven transparency tool. The measure passed the House Appropriations Committee on Jan. 25.
House Bill 1937 – Fentanyl – According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, overdose from fentanyl is now the leading cause of death of Americans between the ages of 18 and 45. Under current law, possession of fentanyl is classified as a simple misdemeanor, which is the lowest criminal penalty available. This legislation would make it a class C felony for anyone who knowingly possesses fentanyl. The bill has been referred to the Public Safety Committee.
“The majority of this legislation comes from citizens simply contacting my office and making suggestions on how to make Washington state better. From the overseas voters bill to the legislation that seeks to find missing and murdered Indigenous people, I’ve had the honor to sponsor these bills on behalf of the amazing people I represent,” noted Mosbrucker. “I highly encourage people to participate in the legislative process by remote testimony during public hearings or submitting written comments that reflect their views.”
To learn more about participating in the process, go to the Washington State Legislature’s “Participating” webpage: https://leg.wa.gov/legislature/Pages/Participating.aspx. You may also call Rep. Mosbrucker’s state Capitol office for more information at: (360) 761-1194.
The first major deadline for bills in the Legislature is Thursday, Feb. 3. This is the House Policy Committee deadline. House bills that have not passed out of their respective policy committees by that date may be “dead” for the session. Legislation necessary to implement the budget are exempt from the deadlines.
For more information, visit Rep. Mosbrucker’s website: RepresentativeGinaMosbrucker.com.