Abbarno: House-of-origin cutoff arrives with positive theme and opportunities for working Washington families

For two weeks, lawmakers in the House and Senate have been working long days, evenings and even weekends on the virtual floors of both chambers debating, amending and passing bills to meet a deadline, Tuesday, March 9, at 5 p.m. That’s the “house-of-origin cutoff” in which bills that have not passed out of the chamber in which they have originated are considered “dead for the session.” Only bills necessary to implement the budget are exempt from the deadline.

As a new lawmaker elected in November, this is the first floor cutoff Rep. Peter Abbarno, R-Centralia, has experienced. He said it ended on a very positive note, focused on helping working Washington families.

“The day of House cutoff on Tuesday reflected an important theme I carried with me to Olympia. We need to create family wage jobs, open up access and opportunities for families and businesses in Southwest Washington, and trust people with their money,” said Abbarno.

The 20th District lawmaker pointed to three bills as examples that passed the state House of Representatives with bipartisan support on Tuesday, just hours before cutoff:

  • House Bill 1015 – Creates the Equitable Access to Credit Program within the Department of Commerce to make it easier for small businesses in rural and underserved communities to access lines of credit;
  • House Bill 1170 – Implements the “Building Economic Strength Through Manufacturing” (BEST) Act, which establishes policies that will help double manufacturing jobs in Washington state by 2031; and
  • House Bill 1297 – Expands the state’s 2008 working families tax exemption so that 400,000 taxpayers in Washington could become eligible for a credit of between $500 and $950.

Abbarno said the House Republican budget framework unveiled last month would also create further advantages and opportunities for working families.

“Washington needs real opportunities to be successful. Our Republican budget invests in working families, students, small businesses, and the most vulnerable populations. There is still a long way to go before the final ‘bang of the gavel,’ but revenue forecasts evidence that our state will have enough funds to accomplish our goals without having to increase taxes on anyone,” noted Abbarno.

Abbarno said it’s time to get Washington safely reopened so that people who have struggled in the state’s closed economy under Gov. Inslee’s orders can go back to work to support their families.

“If anything, the governor should follow the Republican’s “Open Safe, Open Now” plan, and abandon his plans to create new, unnecessary revenue sources, like an unconstitutional capital gains income tax,” Abbarno added.

Although the house of origin cutoff has arrived, Abbarno reminded citizens that 47 days still remain of the scheduled 105-day session.

“Now is not the time to become complacent. This is really the beginning of the third quarter of the game as we start the committee process all over again, considering and debating Senate bills, while Senate committees consider bills we’ve sent to them from the House,” Abbarno explained. “It’s very important that citizens stay involved all the way to the end of the fourth quarter.”

People can watch committee hearings and floor action live on TVW. Citizens can also submit written comments and remotely testify on legislation by going to the state Legislature’s website at www.leg.wa.gov. Messages can be left for lawmakers on the toll-free legislative hotline, 1-800-562-6000.

“I am not letting my foot off the gas pedal, even though we are just over the halfway point,” added Abbarno. “I will continue advocating for our families, businesses and our communities across the 20th District, and push to open Washington safely and open now. Our families, students, and businesses depend on it.”

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov