Sleeper Bill of the Session
Rep. Hans Dunshee (D-44, Lake Stevens) kept his pet bill on the D.L. all session. The strategy worked.
The bill requires the state’s economic development department—which oversees about $4 billion for local capital projects —sewer lines, schools—to make sure the projects are in synch with the state’s green standards that reduce carbon emissions and lower vehicle miles travelled.
For example, is a sewer line being extended to encourage sprawl? If so, no go.
Rep. Dunshee, chair of the Capital Budget Committee, was smiling in the wings of the Senate earlier today, when the bill—which seems like the kind of thing that would draw cries of "Socialism" and "social engineering"—passed (albeit, and on purpose, no longer as its own bill, but rather, as an amendment embedded in a larger bill) without a peep, 28-19.
I must say, with all the hype and noise about the Governor's climate change bill—which is still moving like a kidney stone through the session and doesn't do what it initially set out to do (cap green house gas emissions), Rep. Dunshee's bill seems like the real environmental standard bearer of the session. It gets PubliCola's vote as the Sleeper Bill of the Session—in a good way.
"You're witnessing history," Dunshee said when I approached him in the wings of the Senate and asked him whatever happened to "that bill" (which appeared to disappear earlier this month), "it's passing right now."