Signed Into Law on March 29, 2012!
Governor Gregoire signed EHB 2048 into law on March 29, 2012 and reaffirmed our state’s committment to ending homelessness. “Without passage of this bill, 71,000 more of our neighbors may have wound up on the streets,” said Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles, referring to a Department of Commerce estimate. “Instead we came together and we supported programs that have been proven effective.” You can read the full press release from the Washington Low Income Housing Alliance HERE.
What Is It?
Senate Bill 5952 and House Bill 2048 merged into one bill, EHB 2048. It will extend an existing $20 fee for four years and add a new $10 fee to compensate for lost revenue to state and county programs that address homelessness. Beyond increasing current funding levels, the new fee will encourage cooperation between service providers, private landlords and state & local governments. The $10 fee will expire in 2015 to evaluate its success.
Why Does It Matter?
Revenues from fees on real estate related documents fund state and local services, such as emergency rent assistance, affordable housing, temporary housing vouchers, mental health programs and other support mechanisms. Sixty percent of the funding stays local—within the county it was generated in–with limited restrictions, allowing flexibility to respond to the unique needs of the community. Forty percent goes to the state and funds programs within the Home Security Fund, such as Emergency Shelter Assistance, THOR (The Transitional Housing, Operating and Rent program), the Independent Youth Housing Program and other valuable programs.These programs are critical in the fight to prevent and end homelessness. As the need for these services continues to increase, we are grateful for our legislature passing EHB 2048 and helping to provide revenue for these services.
What Can You Do? Time to Say Thank You
- If you have not yet done so, please register on the home page. Once you’re registered, you can leave comments!
- Our legislators work hard, especially with back to back sessions this year! It is important to recognize their good work and express our appreciation. Please leave a quick thank you comment below. If this bill impacts you personally in any way, please share that as well!