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March 30, 2020

This is your Legislative Bulletin: 2020 Session Recap, which summarizes the legislative session. The Legislative Bulletin will now be produced monthly during the interim.

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Legislative Bulletin headlines and articles.

From the director section

2020 session begins on an optimistic note and ends on a downbeat
City officials and staff: Thank you for your dedication to your communities during this unprecedented COVID-19 emergency. We know you’re working hard to support your residents and we are here to support you. Find COVID-19 information and resources on our website. With an expected economic downturn, the Legislature will struggle to balance the budget in 2021. Read more about how the Legislature is handling the pandemic, what to expect in the coming year, and what you can say to your legislators to avoid the type of cuts that occurred for cities during the last recession. More

Take action section

Watch MRSC’s webinar on the fiscal implications of COVID-19
This free webinar addressed some of the financial and operational issues local governments should consider as the coronavirus outbreak worsens in Washington state, including continuity of operations, impacts to agency revenue, impacts on local economic development, and opportunities for fiscal ‘first aid’. Download presentation materials and watch the webinar presentation.

door-knock-icon-75View 2020 Census resources
The U.S. Census Bureau is publishing current response rates using a real-time map. The tool allows users to view response rates for the country, state, county, city, and more. Check out the map to see how well your jurisdiction is responding to the 2020 Census.

The state Department of Commerce has also published a messaging toolkit to help local jurisdictions communicate with residents about the 2020 Census and COVID-19. The toolkit provides cities with sample messaging, including social media posts, phone scripts, blog posts, and more. Each piece is available in several languages. A variety of related resources are also available on AWC's 2020 Census page.

Media time section

Legislative wrap-up webinar recording elearning-icon-75Certificate of Municipal Leadership program
If you missed it, check out our informative recap webinar of city-related issues from the 2020 legislative session. You’ll gain insight into the outcomes of our seven legislative priorities along with other key outcomes of the 2020 session.

NLC research into COVID-19 response
A survey of 2,200 American residents shows strong support for local government and their response to the coronavirus pandemic. See the infographic and one-pager.


LegPrioritiesOutcomesthumbnailOutcomes on 2020 City Legislative Priorities
The 2020 Legislature addressed AWC's priorities, resulting in both pros and cons for cities. Cities achieved many positive outcomes, but work remains to prepare for next session. Read the pros and cons of the 2020 legislative session.

Need to know setion

Affordable housing
Busy and successful session for our housing priority. More

Budget & finance
Session started with strong economic forecast, but overshadowed by COVID-19 impacts. More

Social equity program moves forward, other marijuana bills fail to pass. More

Economic development
Cities bring attention to tax increment financing, but more work is needed. More

Environment & natural resources
The year of “net ecological gain.” More

General government
Bills mostly favorable for supporting general city operations. More

Homelessness & human services
Homelessness was a budget focus this year. More

HR & labor relations
Short session sees a variety of employee-focused bills. More

Land use & planning
The shadow of Ruckelshaus study on land use policy continues. More

Open government
Exemptions for public employees pass, other PRA bills fail. More

Public safety & criminal justice
Public safety summary – Compromise is key. More

Legislature funds study to expand medication-assisted treatment (MAT) services in jails. More

Public works
Progress made on comprehensive culvert approach. More

Few major infrastructure policies pass, while Public Works Trust Fund remains funded. More

State transportation leaders reckon with cuts due to car tab initiative. More

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