Washington HB 2949: Commission on Persons with Disabilities
Introduced in January 2018, this legislation would create a statewide commission on persons with disabilities that seeks to advance economic opportunity and equality and promote full participation in communities, schools and workplaces. Every three years the commission will produce a comprehensive integrated statewide plan to address disability policy needs at all stages of life. The plan will inform the Governor of Washington’s decisions concerning disability policy. The commission will also produce an annual report on public policies, programs, services, rules and regulations that affect people with disabilities in Washington. The Governor will appoint the commission’s executive director, who must have “substantial professional or administrative experience in disability policy”. The executive director will have full power to supervise the commission and making policy planning decisions. He or she will be supported by a twelve-member Persons with Disabilities Advisory Council appointed by the governor. The Council will be composed of self-advocates and representatives from multiple government agencies that serve people with disabilities. Seven members will be individuals with disabilities. All Council meetings would be open to the public. The first annual report written by the commission was to be submitted to the Governor by December 1, 2019. However, the bill was referred to committee and not enacted.