HB 1570 would build off previous statutes to create the Washington housing opportunities act, a set of various strategies specifically targeted at addressing homelessness, as a direct response to the increasing housing cost. The bill would improve resources available to aid with increasing access and removing barriers to housing for individuals and families experiencing homelessness in the state. The bill would require the department of commerce and the Washington state institute for public policy to conduct a statewide comprehensive and in-depth study on homelessness every ten years to better understand the causes and characteristics of the homeless in Washington state and help decision makers promote efforts toward housing stability. The bill would also require the department, in collaboration with the office of homeless youth, to create a state homeless housing strategic plan every five years starting July 1, 2018 to submit to the legislature. Additionally, by December 1st of each year, the department must provide an update on the state's homeless housing strategic plan and its activities for the prior fiscal year.
Also included in HB 1570 are provisions to do the following:
- Make the temporary $40 local Homeless Housing and Assistance surcharge permanent.
- Increases the local Housing and Assistance surcharge from $40 to $90.
- Change the Home Security Fund from an appropriated account to a nonappropriated account.