Washington State Fairs Association Members – WA Fairs Report Mid-Session 2024
Week four of the 2024 legislative session is close to completion, this coming Tuesday will be the official halfway point of the 60-day session. We passed a major milestone this past Wednesday, the policy committee cut-off. That is the deadline for bills to be moved from committee to receive further consideration. Our next milestone happens quickly, Monday the 5th is the fiscal committee cutoff, that means those policy bills that have a fiscal impact must advance from committee to continue in the process. These cutoffs are the beginning of the funneling process as the legislature works to narrow the universe of legislation that is left in play.
Once we get past the Monday fiscal cutoff, we will spend the next week working on the “floor”. Legislators will use that time voting bills out of the House and Senate moving them to the opposite chamber to repeat the committee process. To date, 3438 bills have been introduced in 2023-24. For comparison 2012-22 had 2835 and 2019-20 had 4638.
Six initiatives to the voters continue to be hanging over anything the legislature does this year. Minority Republicans have used every opportunity they can to bring the initiatives up for a vote while Majority Democrats have blocked the attempts. More and more we are hearing that the potential of lost revenue if the initiatives were to pass has budget writers very cautious to increase spending.
The list below are bills that have a direct impact on Fairs. Two of the bills are moving this year. The rest did not make it past the cut-offs I mentioned above.
HB 2433 – Southwest WA Administration – the bill would clean up the statute allowing the Lewis County Fair to operate the way they are now. There is some gray area in current law that has the potential to impact the way the Fair does business. The issue goes all the way back to the way the fair was originally formed and how it interacted with the County. It’s a good bill for Lewis County and only impacts that Fair.
HB 1648 – Ticket Sales – The bill attempts to regulate several aspects of ticketing including price disclosures and speculative ticketing. The bill also sets up a licensure program for ticket sellers, Fairs would be included in that part of the bill. The legislation was first introduced last year but failed to pass. We have been engaged with the prime sponsor, relaying some concerns we have with the current bill language.
Please contact me if you have any questions or comments.
Bill Detail Status Sponsor Position
HB 1157 Wild and exotic animals H Ag&Nr Leavitt Concerns
(SB 5148) Prohibiting the display of wild or exotic animals for public entertainment or amusement.
3SHB 1648 Ticket sales H Approps Reeves Concerns
Concerning ticket sales.
HB 2433 Southwest WA fair admin. H Rules R Orcutt Neutral
Concerning administration of the southwest Washington fair by the Lewis county board of county commissioners
SB 5148 Wild and exotic animals S Ag/Water/Natur Liias Concerns
(HB 1157) Prohibiting the display of wild or exotic animals for public entertainment or amusement.
SB 6128 Traveling animal acts S Law & Justice Liias Neutral
Prohibiting the use of certain animals in traveling animal acts.
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