WA State Legislation Update – SHB 2640

The legislation (Substitute House Bill 2640) that protects registered beekeepers from legal prosecution of perceived civil damage (including allergic reactions from bee stings) has passed unanimously out of committee. Now it needs to get out of the house rules committee and that is where we could use everyone’s help. Below is the email from the legislative chair of the Washington State Beekeepers Association.

Many thanks to those who called and emailed to get the Beekeeper Liability Protection bill heard by the House Judiciary committee. It was!

And it passed unanimously out of committee, in spite of testimony against from a lobbyist representing trial lawyers. He raised the point that “willful and wanton” is a very high standard to reach for misconduct. Chair Jinkins also expressed a similar concern, so the sponsor, Rep. Buys, agreed to amend the wording to “reckless.”

Rep. Buys introduces the bill (6 minutes)
Testimony on the bill (14 minutes)
Judiciary committee votes (3 minutes)


What to do next?

Email and/or Call the members of the House Rules committee.

The bill must be pulled from Rules to be heard on the floor of the House. Any member of the committee can do so. We should contact them all now.

Bergquist, Steve (D)           (360) 786-7862        [email protected]              Chopp, Frank (D)                (360) 786-7920        [email protected]              Haler, Larry (R)                   (360) 786-7986        [email protected]              Hargrove, Mark (R)             (360) 786-7918        [email protected]              Harmsworth, Mark (R)        (360) 786-7892        [email protected]              Holy, Jeff (R)                       (360) 786-7962        [email protected]              Johnson, Norm (R)              (360) 786-7810       [email protected]              Kraft, Vicki (R)                     (360) 786-7994        [email protected]              Kretz, Joel (R)                     (360) 786-7988        [email protected]              Kristiansen, Dan (R)            (360) 786-7967        [email protected]              Lovick, John (D)                   (360) 786-7804       [email protected]              McBride, Joan (D)                (360) 786-7848       [email protected]              McDonald, Joyce (R)           (360) 786-7968        [email protected]              Ortiz-Self, Lillian (D)             (360) 786-7972        [email protected]              Orwall, Tina (D)                    (360) 786-7834        [email protected]              Pettigrew, Eric (D)                (360) 786-7838        [email protected]              Riccelli, Marcus (D)              (360) 786-7888        [email protected]              Senn, Tana (D)                     (360) 786-7894        [email protected]              Springer, Larry (D)                (360) 786-7822        [email protected]              Stanford, Derek (D)              (360) 786-7928        [email protected]              Sullivan, Pat (D)                   (360) 786-7858        [email protected]              Tarleton, Gael (D)                 (360) 786-7860        [email protected]              Van Werven, Luanne (R)      (360) 786-7980        [email protected]              Wilcox, J.T. (R)                     (360) 786-7912        [email protected]              Wylie, Sharon (D)                 (360) 786-7924        [email protected]

Ask them to pull 2640 from Rules, tell them it passed unanimously from committee, and it is good for beekeepers and for urban agriculture. The message need not be long, and the message you say or type can be the same to each legislator, in your own words, of course. If you use the above email links, the subject line and message body are empty, so remember to fill them in. And don’t forget to put your name at the bottom of the email.

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