BillTracker

Establishing pilot programs to plan for the needs of certain college students experiencing homelessness (Ranker, Palumbo, Darneille)

The Council [the Washington Student Achievement Council] must establish a pilot program to encourage four-year institutions of higher education to plan for the unique needs and challenges of students experiencing homelessness. Such accommodations may include, but are not limited to: Laundry facilities, storage, showers, encouraging culinary programs to provide free or reduced price meals, and providing short-term housing or housing assistance; and plans to develop surplus property for affordable housing to accommodate the needs of students experiencing homelessness.

The pilot program must include two four-year institutions of higher education, one on each side of the Cascade mountain range. The pilot program expires July 1, 2023. The four-year institutions of higher education that participate in the pilot program must provide a joint report to the appropriate committees of the legislature by December 1, 2023, that includes at least the following information: The number of students experiencing homelessness during the pilot program, the number of students assisted, strategies for accommodating students experiencing homelessness, and legislative recommendations.

SUMMARY OF 1ST SUBSTITUTE COMPARED TO ORIGINAL BILL
Creates pilot programs at certain four-year and two-year colleges and universities to plan for and accommodate homeless students.

EFFECT OF CHANGES MADE BY 2ND SUBSTITUTE (Ways & Means)
(1) Requires both college districts and four-year institutions of higher education to develop a capital project plan to renovate or rehabilitate an existing building or facility to provide laundry facilities, storage units, showers, and lockers. (2) Requires the capital project to receive an enhanced score as compared to other capital projects submitted by the district or institution. (3) Encourages any culinary programs to provide free or reduced-price meals to reduce food insecurity. (4) Suggests that college districts and four-year institutions of higher education should attempt to engage with the local housing authority to provide tenant-based rental assistance programs, including for students recently released from incarceration.

Hearing Date: Monday, February 05, 2018 -- 10:00 am

WA State Legislature Link:
http://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=6262&Year=2017    (opens a new browser tab)