Now's the time to spread the word - United Ways of PNW Update

While international and national news capture headlines, the United Ways network continues to do the day-to-day work necessary to make people's lives more sustainable. This is an excellent time for us as an organization to review our priorities and reach out to decision makers, particularly legislators, to seek their input and reinforce their understanding of the challenges our communities face and the role we play to help overcome them. Please read on for more on this.

Help Build the Next Agenda for the United Ways of Pacific Northwest
It's time we draft, review and approve the next legislative Policy Agenda for the United Ways of the Pacific Northwest. You can help by promptly completing this brief online survey, providing input into the policy advocacy positions important on both a regional and state of Washington level. We apologize for the short notice.  Please do the survey now before this Monday, October 30, so that we can assemble a draft for discussion and vote at the November 9 three-state CEO meeting. We seek your input into our policy advocacy positions – both at the UWPNW regional level and specifically in the State of Washington. Feel free to share the survey with your impact staff or volunteers.

State Revenues Continue to Grow. . . but Slower
On Sept. 26, the Washington State Revenue and Forecast Council released the latest revenue report. While revenue collections are slowing, they do continue to outpace projections. Revenues are expected to be $663 million more than anticipated for the 2023-25 biennium and $437 million more than anticipated for the subsequent 2025-27 biennium. Washington continues to enjoy its lowest unemployment rate of all time at 3.6 percent. However, inflation continues to be a risk to the state’s economy and partner budgets, as does the potential federal government shutdown.

Excellent Time To Reach Out to Your Legislators
This Fall is a great opportunity to meet with your Legislators outside the pressures of the busy winter session and campaigns (almost all legislators do not need to run for office this year). Legislators appreciate hearing about the critical needs of their communities and the great work your United Way is doing to tackle those challenges. They also have good questions and ideas that can help shape our messaging.

One of your best tools for these conversations is our Alice Report, which ably lays out – in both data and stories -- the income gaps facing our low and moderate income families in issues like childcare, housing and transportation. These meetings can prove to be priceless once session starts and legislators have to make decisions on the fly that affect our programs and constituencies. If you would like help planning and preparing for meetings with your Legislators, feel free to reach out to UWPNW Policy Director, Paul Knox.


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