You might remember that each January, our representatives in state government go to Olympia for the “legislative session.” During each session, lawmakers create Washington’s budget and write new laws to govern the state. This year’s virtual version was a little bit different, but Ventures still showed up to advocate for the business owners we serve.
The “Tamale Bill.” While it was incredible to see the WFTC pass after so many years, it was also an important reminder that change takes time. Unfortunately, we learned that our bill to regulate home cooking by creating a statewide Microenterprise Home Kitchens permit will need more time to move forward. After working with Ventures to create a equitable, effective system for two years, our partners in public health reversed their position on the bill less than 48 hours before our first hearing. We are grateful for their work this past year, and look forward to our continued partnership with them.
We were still able to pass the bill through three committees in the House, a full House vote, and three committees in the Senate (in 2020, we made it through just one committee in the House) – but unfortunately, the bill was not brought up for a full Senate vote on the final day, and we just missed the deadline.
Moving forward, we will keep working with our partners and small business owners to create a proposal that will create opportunity and equity for all aspiring entrepreneurs. We are also committed to building a program that will not leave micro-businesses unregulated, which creates public health risks. Moving this legislation forward is a big task, but we have come this far and we couldn’t have done that with your help! If you want to learn more or share your story of home cooking, please reach out to Will at [email protected].
In the coming months, Ventures is going to take a step back and revisit our policy priorities for 2022 while continuing to make progress on our existing goals. If you have something that you’d like us to work on, please reach out. In the meantime, we will take some time to celebrate success and learn from our challenges.