Washington Legislative Week in Review

House Bill 1327—public funds for credit unions—has been referred to the Senate Financial Institutions, Housing & Insurance Committee.

Deadlines

Monday, March 7, was the 57th day of the state’s 105-day legislative session and the last day to consider bills in their house of origin. Bills that hadn’t received a floor vote by the end of the day are considered dead.

Public Funds for Credit Unions

House Bill 1327 has been referred to the Senate Financial Institutions, Housing & Insurance Committee. Association staff has continued to meet with members of that committee in preparation for a hearing and vote on the bill. The bill allows public entities to deposit public funds into federally chartered credit unions and increases the amount that may be deposited to the maximum level of NCUSIF insurance. To date, the Chair of Senate Financial Institutions has indicated a reticence to schedule the bill for a hearing.

Prize-Linked Savings Accounts

Senate Bill 5232 is scheduled for a hearing before the House State Government & Tribal Affairs Committee on Wednesday, March 9 at 8:00 a.m. The bill would allow financial institutions to participate in prize-linked savings promotions which incent consumer savings by entering participants into drawings for cash prizes. At least one floor amendment to the bill has been drafted, and the Association is currently studying its potential impact on the program.

Foreclosure

House Bill 1362 was passed by the House on Wednesday, March 2 by a vote of 83-13 with 2 excused. The bill was then referred to the Senate Financial Institutions, Housing & Insurance Committee. The bill includes language that will exempt all credit unions that conducted less than 250 deed of trust foreclosures in the last calendar year from the bill’s mandatory mediation provisions. It also exempts these credit unions from paying for the cost of the mandatory mediation scheme created by the bill. The Association continues to have some concerns with technical aspects of the bill and is working with the bill’s sponsor on resolving those concerns.

Small Business Reg Relief

House Bill 1150 was passed by the House on Thursday, March 3 by a vote of 96-0 with 2 excused. The bill was then referred to the Senate Government Operations, Tribal Relations & Elections Committee where it is scheduled for a hearing on Thursday, March 10. The bill extends from two, to seven calendar days the grace period allowing a small business to correct a violation of a law or rule before sanctions can set in. The Association supports the bill.

Service Members Civil Relief

House Bill 1615 is scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, March 8. The bill expands Washington’s existing service member protections to reservists called to active duty by the Governor for more than thirty consecutive days. The Association has a neutral position on the current draft of the bill.

Financial Literacy

House Bill 1594 is scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee on Thursday, March 10. The bill adopts the Jump$tart national standards for K-12 personal finance education as the state’s essential academic learning requirements for financial education, subject to funds being appropriated to support school districts with curriculum and professional development to implement the standards. The Association supports the bill.