Senate Committee Days in Olympia
The EWU government relations team enjoyed productive meetings during Senate Committee Days. Every November and December, prior to the start of the regular legislative session in January, the Senate and House convene to reorganize policy and fiscal committees. In addition, committee chairs hold work sessions on salient issues.
Chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee, Sen. Kevin Ranker (D), hosted Sarah Pingel and Karole Dachelet from the Education Commission of the States, a Colorado-based think tank, to present on the future of college affordability. Specifically, free college and national trends related to free college were discussed in detail.
Of note, no state has implemented both a local free college program and a state-wide free college program. This fact is especially relevant for Washington state as Seattle takes initial steps to create and implement a free college program for graduates of local high schools. It is yet to be seen how this will affect policy questions related to a state-wide program.
For more information, the committee presentation documents can be found on Washington State Legislature.