WA ACCA Bill Status & Upcoming Events Report What’s Happening I’ve been lobbying for over 30 years and this Monday was the first snow day the Legislature has ever taken. While it was nice to have a day to catch up on emails and bill reading, the rest of the week was spent tracking rescheduled hearings. Next Friday is the first major cut off for bills to be out of committee if they are going to be kept “alive” for session so everyone is scrambling to get bills out of committee – or else try to keep them there.
WA ACCA is paying attention to a number of bills right now:
Direct Contractor Liability (HB 1395/SB 5565): These bills were heard this week. Both would require general contractors to assume responsibility for paying the wages of their subs if the sub does not pay their workers. This would hurt the ability of general contractors – or even sub-contractors who then hire other sub-contractors – to afford to bring sub-contractors on. The contractor community is opposing these bills.
Phasing Out Use of Hydrofluorocarbons (SHB 1112/SSB 5426): WA ACCA is joining with refrigerant manufacturers and national ACCA to try and extend the dates for the phase out of hydrofluorocarbons. Currently, this phase out is happening on a state by state basis which does not provide the economies of scale to effectively keep the cost of alternatives down. In addition there are concerns about supply and availability of alternatives by the dates of the phase outs (starting in 2020, ending in 2024). In addition to the cost and availability issues, WA ACCA is concerned about the safety of the alternatives, which often are highly flammable. ACCA nationally is working on training to help ensure contractor safety but needs about five years for full development and roll out. Both the House and Senate bills have moved from their original committees and therefore are past the cut off. The House bill has a hearing in the House Appropriations Committee on Monday that will give us an opportunity to talk about the costs to businesses in addition to the costs for state and local governments.
Energy Efficiency (SHB 1257/SSB 5293): These bills attempt to move Washington to more efficient building standards, changing state building codes and creating “energy efficiency standards.” Concerns with these bills also surround impacts on contractors and potential limitations that may arise through local government project labor agreements, etc… that may limit the number of contractors who are able to work on building retrofits, etc…These are bills that WA ACCA members need to review thoroughly and provide comments to your lobbyist.
For a list of Upcoming Events and Bills Follow this link for my Full Week 5 Report
Public hearings planned for October and November
The agency will hold a series of public hearings where people can learn about and comment on the proposed rates. The hearings are scheduled for:
– Everett, Oct. 24, 10 a.m., Everett Community College Corporate & Continuing Education Center
– Spokane Valley, Oct. 25, 9 a.m., Spokane CenterPlace
– Richland, Oct. 26, 9 a.m., Richland Community Center
– Vancouver, WA, Oct. 27, 10 a.m., Vancouver NW Regional Training Room
– Tumwater, Oct. 30, 10 a.m., Dept. of Labor & Industries Headquarters
– Tukwila, Nov. 1, 10 a.m., Dept. of Labor & Industries Tukwila Office
People can also comment in writing to Jo Anne Attwood, administrative regulations analyst, P. O. Box 41448, Olympia, WA 98504-4148; or email joanne.attwood@Lni.wa.gov
. All comments must be received by 5 p.m. Nov. 1, 2017.
More information about the proposal is available at www.Lni.wa.gov/Rates
Final rates will be adopted by early December and go into effect Jan. 1, 2018.