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Legislative update on Model Toxics Control Act: Contact House capital budget committee today!

posted Apr 6, 2017, 11:00 AM by RE Sources for Sustainable Communities   [ updated Apr 6, 2017, 2:31 PM ]
This legislative session, Washington must restore and stabilize funding for the 
Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA).

MTCA is a voter-approved law dedicated to cleaning up toxic waste sites, preventing harmful chemicals in manufacturing and products, controlling pollution to protect water quality, and supporting communities heavily impacted by toxic pollution threats. 

In early April, the House released a capital budget proposal that includes much-needed funding for MTCA (HB 2182). On Friday, April 7th, the House capital budget committee is having an executive session on the MTCA funding bill. A key member of the House capital budget committee represents the 40th legislative district —which includes San Juan County and portions of Whatcom and Skagit counties. 

Even if you don't live in the 40th legislative district, please contact Representative Jeff Morris TODAY and tell him to support the MTCA funding bill.
Contacting your legislators by phone is by far the most productive and impactful form of communication. Read more in the New York Times article "Here's why you should call, not email, your legislators." 

MTCA funding bill details

  • Provides stable funding for capital projects like Remedial Action Grants used by local governments for cleaning up toxic sites.

  • Also funds programs for pollution prevention and pollution control for managing hazardous substances like pesticides and waste.

  • Provides a temporary surcharge on the Hazardous Substance Tax (HST) with tiered thresholds to stabilize funding and reduce the tax when those thresholds are met.

  • The bill is not perfect, but a step in the right direct. It could be improved by:
    • Removing the sunset provision for the HST in 2023 and beyond. More toxic cleanups continue to be added.
    • Priority for cleanup and funding from MTCA should be given to overburdened communities which are often communities of color and/or low-income communities.

Talking Points

RE: MTCA funding bill (HB 2182)

Dear Rep. Morris,

My name is [insert your name] and I live in [insert your county]. I am calling to urge you to support HB 2182, a bill that will stabilize funding for pollution prevention and cleaning up toxic sites around the state like the Bellingham Waterfront, which is severely contaminated with mercury and other pollutants. 

HB 2182 is a step in the right direction to address the funding shortfalls of the Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA or “motca”) over the last few years. We need a dedicated fund for toxic cleanups that can withstand drops in the prices of hazardous substances like pesticides and petroleum, especially in light of proposed budget cuts at the federal level for environmental programs. 

Please support healthy communities by voting yes on HB 2181 or support funding solutions that reduce volatility and fully fund MTCA. Thank you.