BILL REQ. #:  S-2275.1 


State of Washington60th Legislature2007 Regular Session

By Senate Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education (originally sponsored by Senators McAuliffe, Pridemore, Fairley, Shin, Berkey, Kohl-Welles, Delvin, Rasmussen, Prentice, Hobbs, Jacobsen and Kilmer)

READ FIRST TIME 02/28/07.   

     AN ACT Relating to modifying the legislative youth advisory council; amending RCW 28A.300.801; adding a new section to chapter 28A.310 RCW; creating a new section; recodifying RCW 28A.300.801; providing an expiration date; and declaring an emergency.


NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1   The legislature finds that the legislative youth advisory council provides a unique opportunity for middle and high school students to be actively involved in government. Council members not only learn about, but exercise, the core values and democratic principles of our state and nation, along with the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and democratic civic involvement. As such, they are engaged in authentic practice of the essential academic learning requirements in civics. In the short time since its creation, the legislative youth advisory council has studied, debated, and begun to formulate positions and recommendations on such important topics as education reform, school finance, public school learning environments, health and fitness education, and standardized testing. The legislature continues to stress the importance of civics education and support the type of civic involvement by students exemplified by the legislative youth advisory council. The legislature intends to make improvements to the program and expand the opportunities for students to participate by creating regional councils.

Sec. 2   RCW 28A.300.801 and 2005 c 355 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:
     (1) ((The)) Nine regional legislative youth advisory councils ((is)) are established to examine issues of importance to youth, including but not limited to education, employment, strategies to increase youth participation in state and municipal government, safe environments for youth, substance abuse, emotional and physical health, foster care, poverty, homelessness, and youth access to services on a statewide and municipal basis. The boundaries of the nine regional councils shall be the same as the boundaries of the nine educational service districts.
     (2) ((The council consists of twenty-two members as provided in this subsection who, at the time of appointment, are aged fourteen to eighteen. The council shall select a chair from among its members.
     (a) Five members shall be selected by each of the two major caucuses in the senate, appointed by the secretary of the senate.
     (b) Five members shall be selected by each of the two major caucuses in the house of representatives, appointed by the chief clerk of the house of representatives.
     (c) The governor shall appoint two members
)) Each regional council shall consist of at least five but no more than nine members who, at the time of appointment, are students age fourteen to eighteen.
     (a) Students may apply to the program by completing an application form and submitting the form to the office of the lieutenant governor. The lieutenant governor is encouraged to make the application forms available online. Students are encouraged to seek a letter of recommendation from a local state legislator to submit with the application.
     (b) By July 2, 2007, and annually thereafter, the lieutenant governor shall select the members for the regional councils from the applications.
     (c) Each regional council shall select a chair from among its members
     (3) Except for initial members, members shall serve two-year terms, and if eligible, may be reappointed for subsequent two-year terms. One-half of the initial members shall be appointed to one-year terms((, and these appointments shall be made in such a way as to preserve overall representation on the committee)).
     (4) ((The)) Each regional council shall have the following duties:
     (a) Meeting three times a year at the educational service district within the region to discuss policy issues of importance to youth. Each regional council shall consider conducting at least some of the meetings via the K-20 telecommunications network. Councils are encouraged to invite local state legislators to participate in the meetings. Each regional council is encouraged to poll other students in order to get a broad perspective on the various issues. The regional councils are encouraged to use technology to conduct the polling, including the council's web site, if the council has a web site;
Advising the legislature on proposed and pending legislation((, including state budget expenditures)) and policy matters relating to youth;
     (((b) Advising the standing committees of the legislature and study commissions, committees, and task forces regarding issues relating to youth;
     (c) Conducting periodic seminars for its members regarding leadership, government, and the legislature
)) (c) Selecting one member to attend a state meeting to present information to the lieutenant governor and members of the legislature. The presentation could include proposals that a legislator could subsequently have drafted as legislation; ((and))
     (d) Accepting grants and donations from public and private sources to support the activities of the council; and
     (e) Reporting annually by December 1st to the legislature on its activities, including proposed legislation that implements recommendations of the council.
     (5) ((In carrying out its duties under subsection (4) of this section, the council may meet at least three times but not more than six times per year, including not more than two public hearings on issues of importance to youth.
)) Regional council members shall not receive per diem but shall be reimbursed as provided in RCW 43.03.050 and 43.03.060.
     (((7))) (6) The ((office of superintendent of public instruction)) educational service districts shall provide administration, coordination, and facilitation assistance to the regional councils. ((The senate and house of representatives may provide policy and fiscal briefings and assistance with drafting proposed legislation. The senate and the house of representatives shall each develop internal policies relating to staff assistance provided to the council. Such policies may include applicable internal personnel and practices guidelines, resource use and expense reimbursement guidelines, and applicable ethics mandates. Provision of funds, resources, and staff, as well as the assignment and direction of staff, remains at all times within the sole discretion of the chamber making the provision)) Each educational service district shall consider creating a web site for the regional council on the web site of the educational service district and is encouraged to conduct outreach to students to publicize the program.
     (((8))) (7) The office of the lieutenant governor shall provide the administration, coordination, and facilitation assistance for the state meeting.
The ((office of superintendent of public instruction, the)) educational service districts, office of the lieutenant governor, legislature, any agency of the legislature, and any official or employee of such office or agency are immune from liability for any injury that is incurred by or caused by a member of the regional youth advisory councils ((and)) that occurs while the member of ((the)) a council is performing duties of ((the)) a council or is otherwise engaged in activities or receiving services for which reimbursement is allowed under subsection (((6))) (5) of this section. The immunity provided by this subsection does not apply to an injury intentionally caused by the act or omission of an employee or official of the superintendent of public instruction or the legislature or any agency of the legislature.
     (9) This section expires June 30, ((2007)) 2009.

NEW SECTION.  Sec. 3   RCW 28A.300.801 is recodified as a section in chapter 28A.310 RCW.

NEW SECTION.  Sec. 4   This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and takes effect immediately.

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