Resolutions

    Resolutions passed during monthly meetings

    Resolution Condemning Seattle City Attorney’s Filing

    Resolution Condemning Seattle City Attorney’s Filing

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership on April 10, 2024


    Resolution Condemning Seattle City Attorney’s Filing of a Standing Affidavit of Prejudice against Municipal Court Judge Pooja Vaddadi

    Whereas the Seattle voters duly and independently elected Judge Pooja Vaddadi, a municipal court judge, to a four-year term in November 2022; and

    Whereas on Friday, March 1, 2024 the departing criminal division chief Natalie Walton-Anderson of the Seattle City Attorney’s Office issued a standing affidavit of prejudice against Judge Vaddadi, effectively preventing Judge Vaddadi from hearing any new criminal case against defendants within the City of Seattle and thereby preventing her from fulfilling her duties as an elected judge; and

    Whereas this action is extreme and negates the election of Judge Vaddadi by denying her right to hear cases that would be within her jurisdiction and puts added pressure on other judges and a system already dealing with workload issues; and

    Whereas, according to Judge Vaddadi, she was not presented with any evidence of the accusations of biased rulings, failure to find probable cause where there was clearly probable cause or any of the other stated reasons for the action disqualifying her and, in fact, none of her previous decisions have been reversed on appeal; and

    Whereas the actions of Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison appear to be based on policy differences with the judge rather than a legitimate legal foundation, none of which have been acknowledged by the City Attorney,

    Now therefore be it resolved the 34th District Democrats reaffirm their support for Judge Vaddadi demonstrated by endorsement of the judge in 2022; and

    Be it further resolved we call on Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison to withdraw the Standing Affidavit of Prejudice that is preventing the judge from doing her duly elected job; and

    Be it finally resolved we call upon Mayor Bruce Harrell, District 1 Councilmember Rob Saka and other councilmembers to condemn the actions taken by the Seattle City Attorney’s office and uphold the values of an independent judiciary.


    Sponsored by Kelsey Vanhee,34th LD Democrats Member, March 2024

     

    Ukraine Sovereignty

    Resolution in Support of the Sovereignty of Ukraine

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership on April 10, 2024


    Resolution in Support of House Resolution 227 Recognizing the Sovereignty of Ukraine and the Unbreakable Spirit of the People of Ukraine 

    WHEREAS on February 24, 2022, the Government of the Russian Federation launched an unprovoked, full-scale, military invasion against Ukraine in direct violation of international law;  and contrary to the expectations of the Russian Federation, Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv did not fall in a matter of days, thus preventing Russia from achieving its objectives of conquering Ukraine and installing a puppet government; and

    WHEREAS  Russia’s invading forces have committed war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other atrocity crimes in Ukraine, including rape, torture, murder, the forcible deportation of children, and the targeting of civilian critical infrastructure; and

    WHEREAS  Russia’s full-scale invasion has created immense humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and, as a result, there have been over 30,000 civilian casualties of which about a third have died, roughly 8 million people have been internally displaced, and 17,600,000 people are in need of humanitarian aid; and Russia’s war has also triggered an immense human and economic toll felt well beyond Ukraine’s border, including a massive influx of over 8,100,000 Ukrainian refugees in Europe and an exacerbation of global food insecurity; and

    WHEREAS, as a share of a country’s defense budget, 12 countries have provided more military aid to Ukraine than the United States; and

    WHEREAS House Resolution 227, “Recognizing the sovereignty of Ukraine and the unbreakable spirit of the people of Ukraine,” has been introduced in the US House of Representatives and a similar resolution has been introduced by Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell in the Senate,

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED the 34th LD Democrats urge US Representative Pramila Jayapal and all of the Washington State Democratic delegation to co-sponsor House Resolution 227:

    (1) affirming strong support for continued United States assistance to Ukraine, specifically the transfer of aid to enable Ukraine to liberate its sovereign territory and win the war as soon as possible;

    (2)  showing support for those United States allies and partners that have provided significant support to Ukraine and urging continued and increased assistance to Ukraine; and

    (3) calling on allies and partners in Europe to increase national defense spending in order to bolster trans-Atlantic security; and

    BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED this resolution be sent to the Washington State Democratic Delegation in the US Congress.


    Sponsored by Carla Rogers, officer and member of the 34th LD Democrats, January 2024

    In Support of Minimum Wage Increase in Unincorporated King County

    Unincorporated King County Minimum Wage Resolution

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    ADOPTED RESOLUTION

    Adopted by the body at the November 8, 2023 monthly membership meeting. 


    WHEREAS the 34th Legislative District Democrats’ platform supports a living wage tied to the median market housing rate; and

    WHEREAS low wages contribute to housing insecurity, homelessness, and many other social problems that weaken our communities; and

    WHEREAS, A full-time worker, putting in 40 hours per week at the minimum wage in unincorporated areas of King County, is required to allocate nearly 70% of their earnings to cover the average monthly rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in King County, which stands at $1,896 (Washington-Apartment-Market-Report-Q3-2023.pdf (uw.edu); and

    WHEREAS in 2013 and 2014 the cities of SeaTac and Seattle respectively established local minimum wages higher than the state minimum wage; and

    WHEREAS in 2022 Tukwila voted by over 82% to raise their city’s minimum wage to approximately the level of neighboring SeaTac, with a phase-in for smaller employers and an exemption for the very smallest employers; and

    Whereas, unincorporated areas of King County, like Skyway and White Center, require workers to be paid just the statewide minimum; and

    WHEREAS raising unincorporated King County’s minimum wage would boost the income of many of these workers and their families, as well as encouraging other cities to do the same, raising the floor throughout King County;

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats endorse the campaign to raise the minimum wage in unincorporated areas of King County.

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats supports legislation that upholds the rights and benefits of workers, ensuring that no wage penalties are imposed on tips or healthcare coverage.

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats advocate for legislation that prevents franchisers, solely determined by employee count, from being categorized as small businesses for wage tier determination.

    BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats will work to urge the King County councilmembers to pass legislation this year to raise the minimum wage in unincorporated areas of King County.


    Submitted to the 34th LD Democrats October 2023 by Rebecca Rego.

    Rank Choice Voting Resolution

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted at the September 9, 2023 membership meeting.


    A Resolution Supporting Ranked Choice Voting for the Presidential Primary in 2028

    WHEREAS voter involvement in democracy is contingent on the belief that their vote means something; and

    WHEREAS 25% of Washington State’s Democratic presidential primary voters effectively “wasted” their vote in 2020 because they cast their ballot for a candidate who dropped out of the race before election day; and

    WHEREAS Washington state had the highest rate of “wasted” votes in the nation; and

    WHEREAS Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) helps solve the problem of wasted votes by allowing voters to vote for multiple candidates in order of preference so that their vote may count for a candidate still in the race or achieving a threshold sufficient to be allocated delegates at the close of the primary; and

    WHEREAS the Democratic National Committee approved every RCV delegate selection plan submitted in the most recent presidential cycle, and Maine is compelled by state law to use RVC in their 2024 state-run presidential primary.

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats call on their representatives to support the passage of legislation to allow voters to rank their presidential preferences in the presidential primary in 2028.

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats call upon the legislature to pass and the Governor to sign the RCV legislation for the 2028 presidential primary .


    Submitted by Ann Martin, August 2023

     

    Minimum Wage Burien

    Resolution in Support of Raising the Minimum Wage in Burien 

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Resolution adopted at the May 10, 2023 membership meeting.


    Resolution in Support of Raising the Minimum Wage in Burien 

    WHEREAS the 34th District Democratic platform supports living wage tied to the median market housing rate: and

    WHEREAS low wages contribute to housing insecurity, homelessness, and many other social problems that weaken our communities; and

    WHEREAS someone working full-time at the minimum wage in Burien has to spend well over half their income to rent a modest 1-bedroom apartment for $1,600 a month; and

    WHEREAS in 2013 and 2014 the cities of SeaTac and Seattle established local minimum wages higher than the state minimum wage; and

    WHEREAS in 2022 Tukwila voted by over 82% to raise their city’s minimum wage to approximately the level of neighboring SeaTac, with a phase-in for smaller employers and an exemption for the very smallest employers; and

    WHEREAS according to data from the Employment Security Department, in 2022 more than 2,000 Burien workers were making less than the minimum wage in effect in the neighboring city of SeaTac, mostly working in retail, accommodations, and food services; and

    WHEREAS raising Burien’s minimum wage would boost the income of many of these workers and their families, as well as encouraging other cities to do the same, raising the floor throughout King County; and

    WHEREAS a petition urging the Burien City Council to pass legislation in 2023 to raise the minimum wage is circulating in Burien,

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats endorse the campaign to raise Burien’s minimum wage through a law similar to the one Tukwila passed.

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats will ask members to help circulate the coalition’s petition building support among Burien residents, workers, and local businesses, and demonstrating the strength of public support to the council.

    BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED the 34th District Democrats will work with the coalition to urge the Burien councilmembers to pass legislation this year to raise Burien’s minimum wage.


    Introduced by: Katie Wilson, Transit Riders Union. 34th District Sponsor: Chris Porter, PCO.

    wealth tax

    Wealth Tax

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership on March 8, 2023 at the monthly membership meeting.


    Resolution in Support of a Washington Tax on Extreme Wealth

    (SB 5486 and HB 1473)

    WHEREAS the 34th District Democrats platform supports wealth taxes and the Washington State Democrats have called for “fair and just tax system for all; by creating a progressive wealth tax;” and

    WHEREAS Washington State has the most regressive tax system in the country, with the bottom 20% of Washington’s lowest-income residents paying nearly 18% of their income for state and local taxes, while those in the highest 20% income bracket pay less than 7% of their income for state and local taxes; and

    WHEREAS Washington State is facing a crisis in funding for public schools, housing and homelessness, developmental disability services, climate change resilience, public transit and transportation, physical and mental health care, and more; and

    WHEREAS Senate Bill 5486 and House Bill 1473, which are titled “Investing in Washington families and creating a more fair tax system by enacting a narrowly tailored property tax on extreme wealth derived from the ownership of stocks, bonds, and other financial intangible property,” propose a 1% tax on financial property in excess of $250 million, with revenue collected funding public education, housing, disabilities, and taxpayer justice; and

    WHEREAS SB 5486 and HB 1473 would generate more than $6 BILLION per biennium for Washington (according to SB 5486’s fiscal note), and affect about 700 Washingtonians fortunate enough to have more than $250 million in wealth; and

    WHEREAS Senator Nguyen and Representative Alvarado are co-sponsors of SB 5486 and HB 1473, respectively,

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED the 34th LD Democrats support the creation of a wealth tax as defined in SB 5486 and HB 1473 to fund needed services for Washingtonians, such as public education, housing, disabilities, and taxpayer justice; and

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED the 34th LD Democrats call on all Democrats in the Washington State Legislature to wholeheartedly support passing these bills. 


    Submitted to the 34th LD Democrats February 2023 by Bunny Hatcher.

    Local Journalism Sustainability Act 

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership at the August 10, 2022 meeting.


    A Resolution Calling for Passage of the Local Journalism Sustainability Act 

    Whereas the first amendment of the United States Constitution protects freedom of speech and of the press, cementing the importance of these rights to the foundation of this nation; and

    Whereas the former president, like autocrats before him tried to erode that foundation by characterizing the press as an “enemy of the people,” thereby threatening the continuation and viability of our democracy; and

    Whereas local newspapers, an important investigative and communicative resource for communities, both urban and rural, in this country, have been losing readership and advertising, which are primary financial resources supporting publication and staffing; and

    Whereas Senator Cantwell’s office released a report stating that over the last 20 years the local newspaper industry has lost approximately 70% of its total revenue and newspapers have let go of more than 40,000 journalists accounting for 60% of the journalistic workforce; and

    Whereas the Local Journalism Sustainability Act (LJSA), introduced by Senator Cantwell in the Senate and Representatives Kirkpatrick and Newhouse in the House (H.R.3940), is an effort to stabilize and reverse these losses by providing local media with tax incentives that support subscribers, advertisers and hiring of reporters, in total estimated to cost about $1.67 billion over ten years; and 

    Whereas, in a floor speech, Senator Cantwell stated, “The tax incentives in this bill will help local newspapers and digital-only news journalists, and broadcast newsrooms remain financially viable to retain and hire local base journalists to cover local news stories;”

    Now therefore be it resolved the 34th District Democrats thank Senator Cantwell for her leadership on this important issue and urge passage of the Local Journalism Sustainability Act by the US Congress; and

    Be it further resolved copies of this resolution be distributed broadly to members of Congress and specifically to Washington State Representatives and Senators.


    Submitted by Ann Martin, member of the Resolutions Committee. 

    Keep Our Care Act

    Resolution in Support of the Keep Our Care Act

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership on May 11, 2022 at the monthly membership meeting.


    Resolution in Support of the Keep Our Care Act 

    WHEREAS, mergers and acquisitions between health care entities, i.e., hospitals, hospital systems, and provider organizations are prolific across the country and in Washington State, negatively impact cost, quality, wait times, and access to legal health care services; and in Washington State these health care entity consolidations receive minimal oversight, allowing large health care systems to dictate patients’ access to care, including reproductive, end-of-life, and gender-affirming care while in other states such as Oregon, Massachusetts, and California they have regulations which require oversight of mergers & acquisitions of health care entities[1]; and  

    WHEREAS, mergers and acquisitions have been proven to drive up costs for patients in Washington State and leaving communities without access to public health care as noted in 2017 when Washington’s Attorney General sued CHI Franciscan in a federal anti-trust lawsuit regarding consolidations that resulted in raised prices, increased wait times, and reduced services and locations[2]; and    

    WHEREAS, A recent study by The New England Journal of Medicine found that hospital acquisitions are associated with moderately worse patient experiences. Washington hospital data indicates that our health system ranks poorly in quality measures, with patient satisfaction scores that are lower than independent hospitals; and 

    WHEREAS, these consolidations restrict staff, in faith-based consolidated care centers, from providing legal, critical services, and yet they continue to take taxpayer dollars. Due to these consolidations and mergers, Washington State’s hospitals were in 2021 49% religious based[3];  and 

    WHEREAS, mergers and acquisitions exacerbate systemic inequities. Private health systems’ efforts to increase revenues leads to worsening health care access and outcomes for Medicaid patients, disproportionately People of Color. About 30% of the population in Washington State identifies as non-white, but over 40% of WA State Apple Health patients are People of Color. 

    THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the 34th Legislative District Democrats urge our Washington State legislators to pass and the governor to sign the Keep Our Care Act, to join other states, such as Oregon, Massachusetts, and California: 

    • To prohibit health care entity consolidations that diminish access to affordable quality care; 
    • To require Attorney General oversight, compliance, and enforcement power to ensure health care consolidations do not negatively impact access to health care services  
    • To institute a health equity assessment so that consolidations/mergers address the needs of marginalized communities; and  
    • To institute public hearings and comment opportunities prior to proposed consolidations; and   

    THEREFORE, BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that a copy of this resolution will be sent to the WA State Legislators and the Governor. 

     

    [1] Oregon House Bill 2362  and Information About Material Change Notices/Cost and Market Impact Reviews | Mass.gov and Examining the Authority of California’s Attorney General in Health Care Mergers 

    [2] Attorney General Ferguson: CHI Franciscan will pay up to $2.5 million over anti-competitive Kitsap deals   “Privately, in documents obtained during the Attorney General’s Office’s investigation, officials at CHI Franciscan and The Doctor’s Clinic (TDC) discussed the deals as a boon to their bottom line and harmful to patient care.  CHI Franciscan’s Chief Financial Officer, Mike Fitzgerald, wrote in an email: ‘I am all for taking advantage of hospital-based pricing. … It would be great to drop a couple of million more to our bottom line, if we think we can do it.’”

    TDC’s former physician president succinctly summarized these effects …: “I can’t wait to hear how CHI [Franciscan] messages the addition of TDC to [Franciscan Medical Group]. ‘You can now get your outpatient care in a complex, relatively unsafe, and vastly more expensive location. You are welcome, Kitsap County…’”  

    [3] [3] Hospital Merger in Washington State Stokes Fears About Catholic Limits on Care | Kaiser Health News  With the Virginia Mason Merger with CHI Franciscan on January 7, 2021, the number of Catholic Hospital beds in WA State increased from 48% to 49% placing WA State as the state with the 2nd highest number of Catholic based hospital beds with Alaska at 49.25%. 


    Submitted by Roxanne Thayer, 34th District Representative to the WA Democratic Party and member of the 34th District Democrats Healthcare Caucus. 

    Gondola

    Gondola Resolution

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership at the May 11, 2022 meeting.


    A Resolution Stating the 34th Democratic Legislative District’s Preferred Alternative for a West Seattle Extension and Calling for a New Independent Study

    Whereas, Sound Transit (ST) issued a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) on the West Seattle Ballard Extension alternatives and is currently receiving public comment on the DEIS; and

    Whereas, ST3 includes light rail construction in South Downtown (SODO) and West Seattle, areas located within the 34th Legislative District: and

    Whereas, the members of the 34th LD Democratic Organization live and work in these areas and have a substantial interest in the location, mode, construction, operation and costs of future transportation in this community; and

    Whereas, having reviewed the DEIS they find the following issues and concerns:

    • The document does not adequately address the years of traffic congestion and obstruction, noise and greenhouse gasses emitted during construction of any light rail alternative. 
    • Nor does it observe the disruption and destruction of mature urban tree canopy, which cannot be replaced. Trees help control stormwater runoff, improve air quality, provide wildlife habitat, and sequester carbon emissions.
    • The DEIS does address the loss of 658 housing units, 120 businesses and 1,140 jobs in the Delridge, Duwamish and Junction neighborhoods of West Seattle alone – not including impacts on the International District. These losses will seriously harm our community and cannot be easily or cheaply mitigated. 
    • The increase in cost of the West Seattle extension and delay in completion until at least 2032 will result in added environmental impacts related to climate altering emissions, air quality and other effects. We are concerned that these impacts make any light rail alternative untenable and speak to the need for a cheaper, more rapidly deployable option.

    Whereas, a new alternative, an urban aerial gondola, has been identified that is not addressed in the DEIS, but shows promise in its cost, faster implementation schedule and reduced environmental impacts; and

    Whereas, such major urban systems have been successfully implemented in cities such as Ankara, Turkey; Mexico City; and La Paz, Bolivia, where they can carry as many as 4,500 passengers per hour, as opposed to the projected 3,200 per hour for the preferred light rail alternative. The cumulative impacts of that differential would be substantial; and

    Whereas, it is projected the gondola system could be operational by 2026, greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced/avoided more than six years sooner than the preferred alternative;

    Whereas, it is also projected that the gondola system would cost 1/10 that of any light rail alternative;

    Now therefore be it resolved, the 34th District Democratic Organization urges Sound Transit to contract with an independent consultant for a new study of the gondola system compared with the light rail for West Seattle, including projected cost, completion date and environmental impacts.

    Be it further resolved, this resolution be sent to the Sound Transit Board as our comments to the DEIS and to the Seattle Mayor and City Council for their consideration.


    Submitted by Randy Litzenberger, co-chair of the Environment, Energy and Land Use Caucus of the 34th District Democrats. 

    Stop Privatizing Medicare

    Medicare Resolution

    1024 1024 34th Democrats

    Adopted by the membership on April 13, 2022 at the monthly membership meeting.


    Whereas, Medicare has been our national health care system for seniors and the disabled in the United States since 1965; and

    Whereas, Medicare beneficiaries are among the most vulnerable populations served by our health care system, and need more, not fewer, benefits and protections; and

    Whereas, traditional Medicare, which does not insert a middleman between the Medicare beneficiary and their chosen health care provider, is a public good and should not be privatized; and

    Whereas, Wall Street has long sought to profit from public benefit programs, such as Social Security, and has rushed to buy up Accountable Care Organizations managing traditional Medicare services; and

    Whereas, the Trump administration opened the door to the complete privatization of Medicare through a Direct Contracting pilot program allowing private equity firms, insurance companies, and corporate health businesses to directly contract to provide Medicare services; and

    Whereas, the Biden administration ended the Direct Contracting pilot and rebranded it as the ACO REACH (Accountable Care Organization Realizing Equity, Access, and Community Health) pilot to begin in January of 2023; and 

    Whereas, public health advocates across the country see little difference between ACO REACH and the Direct Contracting pilot, since both pilot programs allow third party private entities to wedge themselves between patients and their healthcare providers and to draw down the Medicare Trust Fund by making huge profits in several ways, including weakening services for Medicare beneficiaries; and 

    WHEREAS, addressing the healthcare resource inequities suffered by BIPOC individuals and communities is best done within the traditional Medicare system and not through a privatized ACO REACH style program; 

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the 34th Legislative District Democratic Organization opposes privatization of our Medicare system; and supports terminating the ACO REACH pilot program and closing the door on third party entities in our Medicare system; and

    BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, a copy of this resolution be sent to the Washington State US Senators and Congressional Delegation, and  to President Biden and US Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra.


    Submitted by Karen Richter, 34th LD Democratic Organization member and Co-Chair of the Outreach Committee. Karen also serves as Co-President of Puget Sound Advocates for Retirement Action (PSARA}