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Articles written by Juan Morfin


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  • Inslee signs bills to delay WA Cares tax

    Juan Morfin, Washington State Journal|Feb 3, 2022

    Washington’s highly touted and highly contentious long-term care program will be delayed by at least 18 months while lawmakers work amend the program. Gov. Jay Inslee signed bills last week to delay the WA Cares payroll tax on Washington workers just days after the Senate voted 46-3 in favor of delaying the collection of premiums and WA Cares Fund’s implementation. The House of Representatives voted 91-6 in favor of the same bill. Inslee’s action pauses the collection of premiums. The collection is scheduled to begin July 1, 2023,...

  • Bill promotes housing variety in single-family neighborhoods

    Juan Morfin, Washington State Journal|Jan 27, 2022

    Creating higher densities in Washington’s cities will help reduce housing costs, cut fuel emissions and put an end to exclusionary zoning, supporters of House Bill 1782 say. Critics of the idea, however, say it will require significant overhauls in cities’ infrastructure and reduce local control of housing. The bill addresses the “missing middle,” housing options that exist between single-family homes and apartment complexes, including duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes. The bill requires cities to allow middle housing in every zone...

  • Bill would add protection for election officials

    Juan Morfin, Washington State Journal|Jan 20, 2022

    Election officials will get more protection from harassment if SB 5148 becomes law. The bill was approved in the Senate on Jan. 12 with 48 yeas and 0 nays. It will be up to the House to approve or amend it. In debate on the Senate floor, Sen. David Frockt, D-Seattle, said the bill will address a "grievous threat" to our democratic system. "Here in our own state, in Washington state, which inspired this legislation last year, the top elections official, a deputy to our former Secretary of State h...

  • Bill aims to help homeless and foster care college students

    Juan Morfin, Washington State Journal|Jan 20, 2022

    mmunity and technical colleges across the state will get help if HB 1601 becomes law. The bill would provide homeless students and students who age out of the foster care system help with laundry storage, shower facilities, locker rooms, food banks, technology, reduced-price meals or meal plans, case management services and short-term housing/housing assistance. Not addressing the problem “results in people not being able to graduate or go onto a career. It hurts our students, our institutions and our local communities,” Rep. Mari Leavitt,...