News and Events

YDEKC Shared Advocacy Agenda – March 2017

POSTED ON March 16, 2017
YDEKC Shared Advocacy Agenda – March 2017
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Youth Development Executives of King County
Working to advance the youth development field
Deep Dive into Advocacy: Our Shared Agenda

We are in the month of March, and many of our organizations are active at the State level where the legislative session is moving toward budget decisions. There is a place for advocacy at all levels!  Please consider starting where you are. Take 5 minutes a week or 5 minutes a month for advocacy, with over 100 organizations in our coalition, we can be a great force!

Please let any policy makers that you contact know that you are a member of YDEKC! Letting them know you are a member of a 100+ member coalition makes your message even more powerful.

Look over this Deep Dive and see where you might have a chance to “do what you can!”
Please like us on Facebook to have access to timely information between our more formal newsletters.

My thanks,
René Murry
Public Policy Manager, Youth Development Executives of King County
ydekc.org | rmurry@ydekc.org | 206.336.6913

King County Activity
King County Alliance for Human Services Updates
The KCAHS has a been pursuing the task of communicating with all the municipalities about their investment in Human Services and asking them to increase to a base of 6% of their general fund directed toward that category.  Letters have gone out to municipalities outside of Seattle asking for their current investment level and asking for an increase.  Most cities are under 2% at this time. Every city does “count” the funds differently.  If you are able to reach out to your city council or Mayor and let them know about the services you provide in your community and the value of human services in the budget, please do!  For more information regarding that level of outreach, please contact rmurry@ydekc.org.

Best Starts for Kids:
Sheila Capestany
was the presenter for our February 10th Lunching with Leaders. Slides from the presentation is available here.  We also were re-introduced to Megan McJennett, 5-24 Policy and Program Manager, Department of Community and Human Services. Megan has worked over her 20 year career with children of all ages and their families. Her roles have varied from home visiting teen moms and their babies through Head Start to working with youth, whether in the mountains of Guatemala or the neighborhoods of Washington, D.C. The scope of her work has spanned from the national level working on education issues to the state level supporting programs that improve early learning opportunities in Washington for our youngest residents. Most recently she was the New Futures Program Director at Southwest Youth and Family Services where she supported programs for families and youth living in three low income housing complexes in South King County.

Next BSK RFP released: Healthy and Safe Environments: The Request for Proposals for healthy and safe environments is now available here. Public Health Seattle King County seeks proposals that focus on impacting the community in which children, youth, young adults and their families live, learn, work and play by developing policies, creating or improving systems, and changing environments in the specified investment areas:

  • Healthy food and food access
  • Physical activity
  • Unhealthy substances and dangerous products
  • Safe and health promoting environments

Sound Transit 3
YDEKC is beginning conversations around funds that will be available out of Sound Transit 3 that is targeted for education. We have sent out a survey and had a conference call with interested parties in March. Ideas for YDEKC’s engagement in shaping the conversation around these dollars focus on: Transportation Access Ideas for non-profits (especially where public transit is limited or for younger kids), Public Transit Options, Technology Supports, Support for Drop-Out Reengagement, and there is a limited interest in Space access/Capital use for these funds. We will be setting up the appropriate meetings with King County staff and County Council members to be involved in the conversations around use of these funds rollout in 2018 and beyond.

KPLU: Unpacking Government
KNKX, formally KPLU put together an EXCELLENT series called UNPACKING GOVERNENT
This is an excellent podcast series that explains how government works.  Take it along on your next commute!

Washington State Activity
State Budget Revenue Forecast
Click this link to review the Revenue Forecast released on March 16, 2017. The revenue forecast is positive, but does not include enough revenue to cover the estimated costs for McCleary. YDEKC continues to recommend that members ask their elected officials to consider new revenue, such as capital gains, in order to fulling fund K-12 programs and not CUT other services that support children, youth and families.

Here’s a quote from Misha Wershkul, Executive Director of the Washington State Budget & Policy Center about the importance of reforming the revenue and tax system:

“Now that the Washington State Economic and Revenue Forecast Council has provided its revenue projections for the upcoming biennium, legislators have all the information they need to finally start cleaning up the tax code. The projected $303 million change in revenue projections in the coming two-year budget cycle ending in June 2019 is a less than 1 percent variation in the state budget as a whole, and it is not even close to enough to ensure the legislature has the resources required to fund Washington’s schools. Further, these estimates do not factor in an estimated $2.5 billion per year that the state could lose from federal proposals to repeal the Affordable Care Act and slash funding for Medicaid. There are no excuses for legislators to not act swiftly to ensure our state has the resources it needs. They must reform our revenue system – including closing the tax break on capital gains – to fund critical investments to support great schools, healthy communities, and a bright future for all Washingtonians.”

State Budget: Message your Representatives and Senators regarding revenue!
The McCleary Decision regarding the funding of K-12 Education is the primary driver for this legislative session and the budget. There is broad consensus among human services providers and non-profits that Education cannot be funded by CUTTING the programs that support children, youth, and families and our most vulnerable.

Please take the time to make a brief phone call, write an email, or send a letter or YDEKC postcard to state that you support new and/or additional revenue to keep programs in place.  State if you support capital gains taxes and/or closing tax loopholes. Don’t know your legislators? Find them here!

Bills from YDEKC Agenda Moving Forward
Call the FREE Olympia hotline 1-800-562-6000 to leave a message for your lawmakers. Staff answer the phone M-F from 8 a.m.-8 p.m.

Sample message: 

  • “Please vote YES on SHB 1570, the WA Housing Opportunities Act. Please prioritize and fight for a $200 million investment in the Housing Trust Fund to create 5,700 more affordable homes. Please expand the ABD monthly grant to $400/month and maintain the HEN grant at current levels, with an additional $20/month transportation grant. End asset tests for HEN, ABD, and TANF.”

HB1661 The New Children’s Department: The Department of Children, Youth, and Families House Bill passed with a strong bipartisan vote of 77-19!  The budgets from the Senate and the House are anticipated to be released next week, so urge your Senators or Representatives to support this bill.

In particular, add that you are encouraged by the potential for prevention and support of children, youth, and families PRIOR to entering the child welfare system.  State funding for community based programs for these services is of particular interest.

HB 1508 Regarding “Breakfast after the Bell”: This bill recently had a hearing scheduled in the Senate.  Please contact your Senators and Representatives and urge them to include this on their budget!

SB 5236 Civics Learning Partnership: Has had a work session in the Senate and several of our coalition members would be involved in the public private partnership activities.  Great opportunity for supporting civics education for youth and the programs could be supported in after school CBOs. Please contact your Senators to support this bill!

Social Emotional Learning:  The budget proviso for SEL funding has been submitted by Rep Senn.  My understanding is that is to fund the workgroup for another year. If you reach out to your elected officials regarding SEL issues, right now including funding for Counselors and Family Support workers is included in the McCleary plans.

Invest $4m in the Expanded Learning Opportunities Initiative: For more information, please see School’s Out Washington’s Advocacy Alert!

Federal Activity
Funding for AmeriCorps has the potential to be reduced or cut from the Federal budget.  Please consider contacting your Representatives in the US Congress and Senators Murray and Cantwell. You can call or write. Share what value AmeriCorps has had to your programs and the concerns you bring if it is reduced or eliminated.

Save the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program: See this SOWAinformation brief about the 21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) program and this press release about the President’s proposed budget cuts to the 21st CCLC program.Youth Today also wrote a great article about the program. This is the primary funding stream for afterschool programming in the nation. Whether or not your organization receives 21st CCLC funding, it is critical that we save the program. Please write to your Congressional Representative and Senators.

You can also sign this letter from Afterschool Alliance as a representative of your organization calling for at least current funding of $1.16 billion for 21st CCLC within FY18 House and Senate spending bills. Local, state, and national organizations are welcome and encouraged to sign on!

Write a letter, a postcard or call.  If you prefer to email, go to the website of your Congressperson and the email option is there.  You must place your own zip code into their system in order to email.  They do not respond or take emails from outside of their own district.

If you are interested in more national updates regarding Children’s Issues at the Federal, please consider signing up for the newsletter for the Children’s Defense Fund:http://www.childrensdefense.org/

Representative Contact Info

District 1: Suzan Delbene
2442 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-6311
Fax: (202) 226-1606
Hours: M-F 9-5:30pm

District 7: Pramila Jayapal
319 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
DC: (202) 225-3106
WA: (206) 674-0040

District 8: Dave Reichert
1127 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-7761
Fax: (202) 225-4282

District 9: Adam Smith
2264 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-8901

Senator Contact Info

Senator Patty Murray
154 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-2621
Fax: (202) 224-0238
Toll Free: (866) 481-9186

Senator Maria Cantwell
511 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: (202) 224-3441
Fax: (202) 228-0514

City Level Activity
Seattle
YDEKC Member Only Lunching with Leaders: City of Seattle Youth Opportunity Initiative Overview with Catherine Lester, City of Seattle Human Services Department and additional staff members.

YWCA Cherry Street, 4/11/2017 11:15-1:00
Come learn more about the City of Seattle’s Youth Opportunity Initiative and work under way to deepen alignment and coordination across the City of Settle for improved outcomes for kids.
Copyright © 2017 Youth Development Executives of King County, All rights reserved.
Youth Development Executives of King County (YDEKC) is a coalition of youth-serving organizations working together to improve outcomes for young people.