(360) 786-7674|John.McCoy@leg.wa.gov

Sen. McCoy Newsroom

Senator McCoy’s Legislative Update – 2/20/18

February 20th, 2018|Uncategorized|

Sen. McCoy’s Legislative Update

February 6th, 2018|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    McCoy’s bill to help teachers implement Native American history in classrooms passes off Senate floor

McCoy’s bill to help teachers implement Native American history in classrooms passes off Senate floor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Jan. 25, 2018

Senate votes to help teachers implement Native American history in classrooms

OLYMPIA— The state Senate voted late today give teachers tools to implement Washington state tribal history into their curriculum.

“If we have any hope to bring peace to our increasingly polarized country, we must focus on teaching our children a fact-driven, accurate narrative of our collective history,” said Sen. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, prime sponsor of Senate Bill 5028. “Understanding tribal treaty rights and the history of our 29 federally recognized indigenous sovereign nations is crucial to understanding the past and present of our great state.

“There have been many great tribal leaders, like Bill Frank Jr., whose legacy deserves to be taught in our schools. It is also important that students are learning about some of the hard realities – how thousands of Native American children were separated from their families and ‘assimilated’ at government or religious boarding schools run by white missionaries in the 19th and 20th centuries.

“Sadly, there are many misconceptions about our community. Most students have only been exposed to Native American history through a Eurocentric view which completely excludes tribal perspective. Tribes across the state are stepping up their efforts to partner with local elementary, middle and high schools to give students a fuller perspective about who Native Americans are. The goal is to build bonds that will result in a lasting cultural understanding. Telling your own story is powerful; it is time we enfranchize those so often left out of our classrooms.”

SB 5028 strengthens legislation passed in 2015 that requires all schools to use curriculum called “Since Time Immemorial: Tribal Sovereignty in Washington State.” The curriculum materials are free to educators and were developed through a careful collaboration of state, tribal and local leaders.

 

 

###

 

For information: Bre Weider, Senate Democratic Communications, 360-786-7326

January 25th, 2018|Uncategorized|

Sen. McCoy’s legislative update

banner

Dear Neighbors and Friends,

As we head into the third week of the 2018 legislative session here in Olympia, I want to take a moment to provide a brief update. I was honored to be selected by colleagues to serve as Caucus Chair this year. As the Senate Democrats navigate our first session back in the majority, I will continue to help foster our vision and values during this short 60-day session.

In my culture, leaders are often seen as peacemakers, and I intend to keep the peace within our own ranks and when we reach across the aisle to work with our Republican colleagues. It’s important we realize that we are all in this together and must find common ground if we are going to make positive changes for all people in our state.

I will also serve on the following committees:

  • Energy, Environment & Technology
  • Agriculture, Water, Natural Resources & Parks
  • Transportation
  •  Rules

Finishing on Time

Last year, the Legislature ran for nearly 200 days, marking the third year in a row that the Legislature did not end in time. Now that the Democrats are in control of the Senate, we intend to conclude the state’s business within 60 days, as I think voters rightly expect. Republicans both in our Washington and the other Washington have set the governing bar extremely low. Our job will now be to raise that bar and restore public confidence in functioning government.

Rural Broadband

In today’s digital world, having access to broadband internet is survival necessity. Much like electricity and telephones, access to affordable internet service connects people to the world around them. Those of us in large cities may not view internet access as an equity issue, but more than 200,000 people in Washington still lack access to broadband and more than 400,000 have access to only one provider and no choice. A staggering 68 percent of Americans on tribal lands remain cut off from broadband access.

I introduced legislation last session to expand the authority of public utility districts and ports that want to invest in broadband, and I support other bills that would provide an improved pathway for public-private partnerships.

Without fiber-optic cables, rural reservations and communities will remain cut off from access to education and economic opportunity everyone else enjoys. I will continue to push for rural broadband access, as all residents deserve to be connected to those around them.

Stay informed this Session

The Legislature has a variety of tools to keep you informed about what is happening during the legislative session.

  1. You can sign up for updates via email and get anything from lists of bills next to be voted on the floor, to committee schedules, to legislative reports, right to your inbox. To sign up, click here. (link)
  2. Watch the action for yourself. Floor debates and votes, press conferences and public hearings in committees can be viewed on www.TVW.org (link).
  3. Want to know more about the budget and state’s finances? Go to www.fiscal.wa.gov.
  4. The main website for the Legislature is www.leg.wa.gov. You can find all bill information, contact information for legislators, state laws and legislative agendas.

Video update

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you here in Olympia. Please do not hesitate to contact me with your questions and concerns.

Sincerely,

Sen. John McCoy

John.McCoy@leg.wa.gov

Phone: 360-786-7674

January 23rd, 2018|Uncategorized|

McCoy takes on new state Senate committee assignments

OLYMPIA – Sen. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, will serve on four key Senate committees when the 2018 legislative session begins in January.

McCoy, who will continue to serve as Senate Democratic Caucus Chair, was chosen by his colleagues to serve on the following committees:

• Energy, Environment & Technology
• Agriculture, Water, Natural Resources & Parks
• Transportation
• Rules

“It’s an exciting time in Olympia and I’m looking forward to taking on a few new roles this year,” McCoy said. “I will continue to focus on critical water and land use issues as well as technology challenges like the expansion of high-speed internet throughout rural and underserved areas.”

The committee changes stem in part from Democrats gaining a one-seat majority in the Senate after winning a special election earlier this month in the 45th Legislative District. With Democrats back in the majority, they now have the power to set the agendas of Senate committees and floor action, determining which bills will be heard and brought up for votes.

The 2018 legislative session gets underway in Olympia on Jan. 8.

November 14th, 2017|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    McCoy: Washingtonians about to pay for GOP’s refusal to compromise

McCoy: Washingtonians about to pay for GOP’s refusal to compromise

OLYMPIA – Sen. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, released the following statement today after the Legislature’s failure to pass a capital budget:

“I’m beyond disappointed that lawmakers will leave Olympia this year without a capital budget. This bipartisan budget included more than $4 billion dollars for school construction, mental health facilities, affordable housing, parks and other community projects.

“In Everett alone, the Cocoon House for homeless youth lost out on funding for its expansion and Everett High School won’t receive $2 million for a new center focused on getting students prepared for high-demand healthcare careers.

“Senate Republicans insisted on holding up the capital budget until lawmakers essentially overturned a recent state Supreme Court ruling requiring counties to protect ground and surface water supplies before new wells are drilled.

“Washington’s tribes and other groups interested in protecting our state’s natural resources support the court’s decision, but also understood early on that everyone needs access to water. That’s why they offered a path that would allow access to water — even in sensitive basins — as long as mitigation projects could ensure sufficient stream flows for salmon and other species to recover.

“Despite months of good-faith negotiations, Senate Republicans insisted on a ‘my way or the highway’ approach to this issue. GOP leaders kept pushing a bill that would ‘fix’ the court ruling by nullifying it. By pitting landowners who want to develop property against the reality that our natural resources are finite and that new wells can divert water from existing users, the Republicans have succeeded only in instilling unnecessary panic into a situation that requires thoughtful collaboration.

“This is no way to govern – and the result is a historic loss for our entire state.”

July 20th, 2017|Uncategorized|

Sen. McCoy’s legislative update

Dear friends and neighbors,

As you may have heard, the Legislature approved a new state budget that directs spending over the next two years.

I voted against our state budget today because it simply balances on the backs of middle- and low-income families and individuals as it relies on a heavy property tax increase that will have an especially severe impact on the households in the communities I serve.

On the plus side, the budget makes key investments to our mental health system, homelessness assistance, implements the Clean Air Rule and keeps our state worker salaries competitive. It also makes significant investments into our K-12 system, addressing the state Supreme Court’s requirement in the McCleary ruling, that basic education funding come from the state.

Despite that progress, I simply could not vote for a property tax increase that isn’t fair or sustainable.

Unfortunately, we only had a few hours to review the full budget before we voted on the document. I will offer more insight on the budget in the coming days as I’ve had time to digest it in its entirety.

I look forward to working with my colleagues to find better ways to fund our state government in the years to come.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.

Sincerely,
Sen. John McCoy

June 30th, 2017|Uncategorized|

Sen. McCoy’s legislative update

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Yesterday we worked late into the night as we debated the Senate Republicans’ budget proposal to guide the state’s spending over the next two years. When the bill finally came to the floor for a vote around midnight, I joined all my Democratic colleagues in voting “no” on a GOP proposal that fails to amply fund our public schools and will make life harder for Washingtonians who already struggle to make ends meet.

Because the Republicans have a slim majority in the Senate, they had just enough votes to move their budget forward. The closer you look at this budget, however, it be-comes clear that this is a property tax plan impersonating as a K-12 education plan for our 1.1 million schoolchildren. The plan makes our already unfair tax system even worse, picking winners and losers from our communities. Some school districts would actually see less financial support than they would under the current system while at the same time paying higher property taxes.

We eagerly await the release of the House proposal early next week. Our task in Olympia this year is to make a generational change in education funding, eventually offering a world-class education to all of the 1.1 million students in our state. We re-main committed to that task.

Please click below to watch my latest video update where I discuss the Senate Republican proposal.

I’ll have another update in the coming weeks as we get a better picture of the competing budget proposals and how we move forward toward a final solution. Thank you for the privilege to serve you here in Olympia and please don’t hesitate to contact my office and please connect with me on Facebook and Twitter.

Sincerely,
Senator John McCoy
John.McCoy@leg.wa.gov
Phone: 360.786.7674

March 24th, 2017|Uncategorized|
  • Permalink Gallery

    McCoy: Levy extension eliminates threat of massive budget cuts to our schools

McCoy: Levy extension eliminates threat of massive budget cuts to our schools

OLYMPIA – The Senate passed Senate Bill 5023 just before a key deadline on Wednesday, delaying the  levy cliff and a $358 million dollar cut to Washington schools. Sen. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, released the following statement on today’s passage of the levy cliff extension:

“Today’s action in the Senate brings relief to schools across the state and eliminates a threat of massive budget cuts.

“Senate Democrats have stayed committed to finding a solution and it has paid off for the millions of students, parents, teachers and school administrators in our state. Now it’s time to sit down and find compromise on a solution to the larger education funding challenge that substantially increases funding for all of our schools.”

March 8th, 2017|Uncategorized|

Sen. McCoy’s legislative update

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We are almost at the halfway mark of the 105-day session and we are starting to move legislation out of the Senate and over to the House for consideration. Democrats continue to focus on improving education outcomes for our kids so they will be prepared for the jobs of the future. There will be an estimated 740,000 job openings in our state in just the next five years. Education equals jobs – plain and simple.

Standing up for our values

Gov. Jay Inslee signs an executive order affirming and clarifying Washington state’s policies for state agencies who provide services to immigrant Washingtonians on Thursday in Olympia.

The policy and rhetoric coming from the Trump administration is dangerous and does not represent our inclusive values here in Washington. I was proud to stand in support of Gov. Inslee on Thursday as he signed an executive order reaffirming our state’s commitment to tolerance. Democrats in Olympia will continue to protect our economy and the immigrants who contribute their talent and energy. We have achieved too much to go backward.

Expanding dental health care access for tribes

Gov. Jay Inslee signs Senate Bill 5079 sponsored by Sen. John McCoy in the State Reception Room at the Washington State Capitol in Olympia.

More than a decade since I first introduced the idea, this week Washington took a significant step toward expanding access to oral health care on tribal lands. I was proud to join tribal leaders from across the state as Gov. Inslee signed my bill into law on Wednesday. Senate Bill 5079 lifts restrictions on tribes using federal funding to employ dental therapists — mid-level providers who can perform cleanings, install fillings and provide education on oral health. Read this report from the Tacoma News Tribune about long journey to get this measure passed. I want to thank everyone who worked on this effort over the last several years. We persisted and it paid off!

Telephone Town Hall

I want to thank everyone who participated in the 38th Legislative District Telephone Town Hall last week. You can listen to the town hall here.

GOP’s lack of action on levy cliff hurts schools

Despite bipartisan agreement on the need to shield schools from the levy cliff, SB 5023 and HB 1059, Senate Republicans refuse to allow a vote on a Democratic bill to allow local school districts to continue to collect money that has already been approved by voters. As a result, school districts across the state would lose $358 million in funding. The House passed the levy cliff bill nearly a month ago. As school districts prepare their 2018-19 budgets, they have no choice but to map out Draconian scenarios that would cut programs, lay off teachers and increase class sizes. You can view how much money schools in your area will lose by viewing this map.

Video update

Please take a few minutes to watch my latest video update here.

Stay in touch

It is a privilege to serve you here in Olympia. Please don’t hesitate to contact my office and please connect with me on Facebook and Twitter. Please also follow our work on the Senate Democratic Caucus Facebook page.

Sincerely,

Senator John McCoy
John.McCoy@leg.wa.gov
Phone: 360.786.7674

February 24th, 2017|Uncategorized|