IPS Legislative Comment Process

Day 0: Section receives request from WSBA legislative analyst to review bill(s).  Section Legislative Liaison (LL) confirms deadline date to respond with WSBA if none initially provided.

Day 1: LL sends email with bill and any background provided, researched or links to the Executive Committee (EC) asking whether the bill:

  1. Appears to have statewide impact;
  2. Meets GR 12 – affects the administration of justice or the practice of law;
  3. Determines if anyone on the EC has interest/expertise or wants to serve as point person on the bill;
  4. Asks for responses within 24 hours; and
  5. Asks for availability for conference call to vote on the position to take – conference call date being at least one day before decision is due to WSBA.

Day 2: LL has responses from EC and determines if there is enough knowledge or positions taken that the EC can take a position.

Day 3: LL or point person (with knowledge about the subject of the bill) prepares communications for the Communications Chair to send out via email to the Section listserv/LinkedIn/website (see FORM for the communications) to include:

  1. a copy of or link to the bill;
  2. any available details received from WSBA or on the WSBA legislative page of the website;
  3. deadline to respond (24 hours before EC meeting);
  4. person to contact for comments; and
  5. request for involvement by interested Section members for i) educating members, EC about the issue, ii) writing comments, iii) testifying if needed and/or iv) otherwise being the point person with expertise on the issue.

2 Days before WSBA Deadline – review member responses.

1 Day before WSBA deadline – telephonic EC meeting to vote – 75% of the EC must determine whether to take a position at all per GR-12 or will take no position.  If a position will be taken, it must be one of the following:

  1. Section Supports the bill;
  2. Section has Concerns about the bill – requires a letter, possible testimony;
  3. Section Opposes the Bill as Drafted – requires letter, documentation, suggested fix, possible testimony;
  4. Section Opposes the bill – requires letter and someone to testify (assumes bill cannot be fixed); or
  5. No Position – does not meet GR 12, not important enough to warrant comment, or cannot meet 75% agreement on a position.

WSBA Deadline LL or the Section Chair sends Section position/statement to WSBA.

A summary of the bill and the position taken by the Section will be reported on the Section’s website on a monthly basis or as needed.

For more information, see “Advocating for Change: How you Can Participate in the Legislative Process” by Bonnie Stern Wasser, Esq., IPS Board Member.