Legislative briefly

  • Monday, March 2, 2020 5:43pm
  • News

Undocumented loans

Students who are undocumented immigrants may soon find it easier to finance their higher education with a proposal working its way through the state legislature.

Senate Bill 6561, now under consideration in the House, establishes a student loan program for undocumented immigrants, including DACA recipients who are not eligible to receive federal financial aid. “I am undocumented, and I do not have DACA. I arrived at this country when I was three months old, so this country’s all I know, and I don’t know anything else,” said Alondra Munoz, a student. If passed, it will become effective July 1, 2021.

Transportation fix

Facing a shortfall of $450 million, lawmakers patched together a budget to fund highway maintenance, the Washington State Patrol and other transportation projects.

The Senate Transportation Committee developed a proposed budget that would maintain short-term stability following the revenue shortfall caused by the passage of I-976 — the $30 car tab initiative.

Sen. Steve Hobbs, D-Lake Stevens, said assembling this budget through the revenue crisis required more bipartisan cooperation than in most years. He said the committee prioritized allocations to protect the most-vulnerable populations and communities by preserving mass transit programs, unpausing projects that were put on hold, and funding safety and maintenance measures.

Hobbs said managing the degradation and preservation of roads and highways in the state will be a pressing need in the future, and new revenues will be needed.

Hobbs said he is in favor of implementing a road-usage charge, which would tax vehicles based on the amount of miles driven, for electric vehicles who use the roads but do not have to pay gas tax.

Immigrant law

OLYMPIA – Undocumented immigrants in Washington state may no longer fear unexpected arrests thanks to protection that legislation under consideration promises to provide them. House Bill 2567, and its companion Senate Bill 6522, would prohibit civil arrests without a court order or arrest warrant within one mile of a court facility.

“For me, as a refugee, it took me a while to overcome my fear for police,” said Rep. My-Linh Thai, D-Bellevue, the House bill’s primary sponsor. “It took me a while to overcome my fear for the … judicial system. I overcame my fear and my mistrust because I believe … that everybody deserves to have access to justice.” According to the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington, “over the past two years, there have been more than 200 documented civil arrests at courthouses in over 18 counties” statewide.

“The rise in immigration enforcement in Washington courthouses has a direct chilling effect on immigrant crime victims who would otherwise turn to the courts for protection,” said Alex Kory, a crime victims attorney with the Northwest Justice Project. “When victims are scared to seek protection, crimes go unchecked,” Kory said. The bill would only apply to arrests made for the violation of civil law and “excludes arrest for alleged criminal law violations, or arrest for contempt of court,” according to the substitute Senate Bill report.

– Information for Legislative briefly is provided by WNPA interns in Olympia.

More in News

Fences have been put up around Marysville playgrounds to keep kids off. (Steve Powell/Staff Photos)
Marysville leaders concerned as (almost) everything’s closing

By Steve Powell spowell@marysvilleglobe.com MARYSVILLE – Within hours of Gov. Jay Inslee’s… Continue reading

DOUGLAS BUell/Staff Photos
                                Lead cook Keina Gowins with Presidents Elementary hands out free grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches to students and parents outside the school Wednesday. Presidents and AHS serve as central kitchen sites for preparing meals, which starting next week will expand to 12 delivery sites from Silvana to Oso. Right, Arlington Food Bank executive director Carla Gastineau and Mike Simpson, food bank board president and owner of Arlington Grocery Outlet, partnered with the district with their Meals Til Monday program, and gave a woman a box of donated food while at Presidents.
Arlington students won’t go hungry during the COVID-19 school closures

ARLINGTON – Arlington schools are closed through April 24 to help fight… Continue reading

People gather to pick up special allergy meals before leaving Lakewood High School on Wednesday in Marysville. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Districts taking meals to students since schools are closed

By Stephanie Davey The Herald LAKEWOOD — Children wearing pajamas stood outside… Continue reading

Jon Nehring
Letter about coronavirus from Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring

This is an edited version of a letter Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring… Continue reading

Jennifer Thompson, left, and her father Ron Thompson secure a new remembrance plaque to the Oso slide site gate on Sunday, near Oso. Ron Thompson handcrafts a new plaque for the gate every year. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Community remembers Oso slide victims, survivors

By Ben Watanabe The Herald OSO — The power of remembering the… Continue reading

Crews will blow garbage into the street and sweep it up over the next few weeks. The city is asking people to move their cars, trash cans and recycle bins when they come around to help them do a thorough job. (Courtesy Photo)
Marysville shuffles workers due to virus, seeks public’s help for sweepers next week

By Steve Powell spowell@marysvilleglobe. MARYSVILLE – From working from home to teleconferencing… Continue reading

Inslee: Stay home for 2 weeks

By Jerry Cornfield and Zachariah Bryan The Herald OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay… Continue reading

Scott Beebe hands out Chromebooks to people in their cars. (Steve Powell/Staff Photos)
Marysville parents anxious to pick up school materials for kids

By Steve Powell spowell@marysvilleglobe.com MARYSVILLE – A few days ago Marysville schools… Continue reading

Briefly

Beware of coronavirus scams SEATTLE – U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran is… Continue reading

Jon Nehring
Marysville leaders’ trip to D.C. productive

MARYSVILLE – City leaders recently obtained advice on how to get more… Continue reading

City Council works toward financing new Fire Station 48

ARLINGTON – The city signed an agreement with Sterling Bank to negotiate… Continue reading