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Friday, February 28, 2014

Republican State Senator Shocks Colleagues, Kills Funding for Homeless Programs

Posted by on Fri, Feb 28, 2014 at 2:55 PM

You know where American Democracy™ fails? In little rooms in Olympia where petty politics play out, the poor get trampled upon, and it's all hidden from view. Yesterday afternoon, after TVW turned off its cameras at a Senate Financial Institutions, Housing, and Insurance Committee hearing, State Sen. Jan Angel (R-27 26) suddenly, to the astonishment of her colleagues, killed off a bill that funds most of the state's homeless programs by ending the hearing before bringing it up.

Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom called Angel and told her to table the bill, Sen. Steve Hobbs (D-44) says, adding that Tom told him that directly. And rumors abound that Tom did it merely to perturb Speaker Frank Chopp. "There's those theories out there," says Hobbs. "He didn't say he wants to poke Frank Chopp in the eye, but I think everyone knows what Frank Chopp's thing is." Housing has long been Chopp's signature issue.

Here's how the Washington Low Income Housing Alliance describes the bill (ESHB 2368):

Washington State has embraced the use of modest recording fees on some real estate related documents as a significant source of funds for homelessness programs. These effective state and local programs help transition people off the streets into shelters and homes. The fees are the state’s most significant funding source for homelessness programs, representing almost half of all funds.

This fee is set to reduce by $10 in July 2015 and then reduce by another $20 in July 2017. This would result in a loss of 62.5% of total current funding for homelessness. If this happens, effective homelessness programs across the state will experience severe cuts or will close. This could seriously set back the progress we’ve made in decreasing homelessness in Washington.

Here's how the bill-killing went down (audio here):

Angel: The executive session is now closed and the meeting is adjourned.

Sen. Don Benton (R-17): Whoa whoa whoa. Madam chair, what about 2368?

Angel: The meeting is now adjourned.

Benton: Okaaay. That is abrupt and very disappointing. We worked very hard on this affordable housing bill. And we had an agreed-to amendment.

Sen. Steve Hobbs: I too am greatly disappointed, madam co-chair... We had the votes. We had a Republican Senator work with a Democratic house member. This is bipartisan, bicameral... I believe Representative Benton and Representative Sawyer did make the bill to a point where all parties were not opposed to the bill...

Angel: That is not correct. All parties are not in agreement, and therefore I have adjourned the meeting. So we'll continue to work on this during interim...

Sen. Sharon Nelson (D-34): Madam chair I'm also wanting to express my disappointment. This will affect homeless individuals. It will affect the 10 year plan in King County that is critical to providing them shelter... To abruptly adjourn this meeting without protecting the homeless really, really bothers me and it will affect those who need a voucher just for housing over their heads on a cold day.


Angel: Thank you, your comments have been so noted. Thank you.

"It's not clear if Rodney Tom did this as a favor to bankers and realtors or out of political retribution," says FUSE Washington's Collin Jergens. "This is a new low for Rodney Tom."


Comments (61) RSS

Newest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
Joan mcbride is running against rodney tom. Although he is running as a d, he is in fact nit. Joan mcbride is the true d candidate and endorsed by the democrats of wa.
Here is her website.
Posted by Jacobwfilm on March 12, 2014 at 10:34 AM · Report this
Rodney Tom is doing a fantastic job at representing his constituency. Why in the f*** should people in Medina care about the homeless? They don't live in Medina. I think it's brilliant that he's a "Democrat." That way his rich technocrat "liberal" neighbors can feel good about voting for him and he can fuck up WA state government all he wants. The guy deserves his own country to run. How about Venezuela?

"The median list price per square foot in Medina is $698, which is higher than the Seattle Metro average of $167. The median price of homes currently listed in Medina is $2,798,800 while the median price of homes that sold is $1,350,000."
Posted by Rondey Tom, Emperor of WA on March 11, 2014 at 11:44 AM · Report this
artistdogboy 59
Koch controlled ALEC Twit
Posted by artistdogboy on March 4, 2014 at 11:53 PM · Report this

Please call the WA Legislative Hotline at 1-800-562-6000 and tell your representatives you support housing for homeless people. Tell them to “Ensure that the homeless housing and assistance surcharge fees don’t sunset. Please support ESHB 2368.”
Posted by go bulldogs on March 3, 2014 at 2:53 PM · Report this
The guy answering Angel's phone- 360-786-7650 is not just taking our name and complaints/concerns, he's debating with constituents, and not in the kindest way possible (not surprising). Then again, neither was I. My first sentence was that I was disappointed with her decision and that this would hurt people. His response "Who will it hurt?" WTF?! That's pretty much set the tone.

I was on the phone for over 10 mins & now I am now angrier than before. Probably not the result that they intended.

He's trying to claim that there were major problems with the bill, but she should/would have said that on the senate floor or offered amendments. When I said it was bi-partisan he shot back with "That doesn't mean unanimous." Well fucking, DUH, I wanted t o say, but instead I said. Bi-partisan agreement on anything is a rare thing in the Senate today.

He's saying that they'll take it up again in two weeks, I'm sure by reducing the fee again because he was basically bitching about how much is in the fund now.

I will be watching to see what happens next and told him to look forward to my call. UGH!

Posted by S Smith on March 3, 2014 at 2:51 PM · Report this
So, if cutting it $30 means 62.5% of funds disappear, does that mean the fee is now ~$50? Because if $50 is a break-point in a housing purchase, you've got bigger problems. $50 is peanuts when buying a home!
Posted by Ms. D on March 2, 2014 at 8:25 PM · Report this
Both the DeathAngel and Rodney Tom need to be driven from office. She has been a phoney and a whore for the Koch Bros. long enough
Posted by mslottie on March 2, 2014 at 12:10 AM · Report this
Thank you, #53, for helping me understand the connection between Frank Chopp, Solid Ground and Washington CAN. That is very interesting. Democrats trying to *say* they are for the down-trodden, but really, they AREN'T.

Washington CAN told me when I first started lobbying for the foreclosure victims: "We will not support you in this effort." Oh really? You don't want to stop the slide of victims into foreclosure?

NOW, everything makes sense. That fuckwad Frank Chopp and his bullshit Democrats. BTW, not saying that the bullshit Repugs are better. BOTH parties are so corrupt beyond belief.
Posted by GuyFawkes on March 1, 2014 at 10:11 PM · Report this
OK SO Frank Chopp Started LIHI, Low Income Housing institute 23 years ago with Scott Morrow of SHARE/Nicklesvile FAME who claims to take No salary, no job since he left the Seattle Tenants Union working with Nick Licata's Lisa Herbold.
AND we have Michael Riehert Catholic Community Services Head, who gets MILLIONS in Tax Money to run the KC211 System, Send the homeless to SHARE, buddy Scott, until 6 weeks to get an intake appointment for Housing, LIHI is run by Franks Buddy Sharon Lee who's benefits and salary are close to $200,000.00 a year. and it is rumored that Frank Chopp who started Solid Ground has a consulting fee,

Posted by sportsmama on March 1, 2014 at 7:49 PM · Report this

Because our idiotic legislature has allowed illegal foreclosures to continue unfettered for the last SEVEN YEARS.

In fact, what these idiotic legislators aren't even talking about is: MERS (a banking scam corporate entity) has been stealing MILLIONS from our state through not recording assignments and transfers of interest in real property......effectively taking MILLIONS from our homeless funding.

And only NOW the legislators are talking about it? Olympia is the biggest god damn joke. They all need to be fired.
Posted by GuyFawkes on March 1, 2014 at 6:57 PM · Report this
Lissa 51
@ Seattleblues: Mathew 25 morherfucker.
Don't you ever come in here again and pretend to be a Christian you crazy Dickensian caricature.
You are awful.

Posted by Lissa on March 1, 2014 at 2:40 PM · Report this
Phoebe in Wallingford 50
When Angel said: "That is not correct. All parties are not in agreement, and therefore I have adjourned the meeting. So we'll continue to work on this during interim..." doesn't that mean that they're just going home for the night and will discuss it later?
Posted by Phoebe in Wallingford on March 1, 2014 at 2:37 PM · Report this
venomlash 49
@46: I'm sure other people didn't particularly want to pay for your American education when you were a kid, then. Guess what? They did anyway because they were patriots who cared more about the overall well-being of the nation than having another $20 in their pockets. And now you've gone and wasted the education they gave you by being so deliberately stupid.
Posted by venomlash on March 1, 2014 at 1:57 PM · Report this
@42: Thank you for pointing out the error. Fixed.
Posted by Ansel Herz on March 1, 2014 at 1:42 PM · Report this
Oh and so you know Herz, you dribbling moron, democracy, American or not, is not a license to steal. Voting those who won't work the income of those who do is theft, not democracy.
Posted by Seattleblues on March 1, 2014 at 10:17 AM · Report this
Know how I help the homeless problem? There are two steps. I earn MY OWN money for housing. Then I pay (well, paid since I own my house) for that housing.

Know what I don't want to pay for? Yep. Other peoples housing.

Grow the hell up liberals. Nobody owes you shelter. Nobody owes you food or medical care. These are things adults (look it up kids, it's a real interesting word!) buy FOR THEMSELVES.

Posted by Seattleblues on March 1, 2014 at 9:40 AM · Report this
Former Kirkland Mayor Joan McBride is running against Rodney Tom. Whereas Rodney Tom has never demonstrated any connection to the social services, Joan McBride has significant connections to the social services. She is on the board of Friends of Youth, the youth shelter. She is also strongly associated with Hopelink, Imagine Housing and Eastside Baby Corner (which provides clothes, household items and school supplies to children).
Posted by Linda Seltzer 2012 KCDems Candidate Support Committee Chair on March 1, 2014 at 5:28 AM · Report this
Claypatch 44
@18: Bailo....seriously, go choke on a cum covered sock.

I just wrote to Rodney Tom's office calling him out for this weaselly maneuver. Not that I think he listens, but it does make me feel a teensy bit better. Time to donate to his opponent and get Rodney "Fuckface" Tom out of office.
Posted by Claypatch on March 1, 2014 at 12:48 AM · Report this
Yeah, mea culpa. I should have but didn't send her opponent a contribution. I had no idea she would be so irresponsible and petty as to do something like this. Disgusting!
Posted by nwcitizen on February 28, 2014 at 10:59 PM · Report this
Sen. Jan Angel represents LD-26, not LD-27 as indicated - she was elected in a special election last November that was virtually ignored by The Stranger and everyone else in Seattle in favor of the in-the-end-it-didn't-matter contest between McGinn vs Murray. Thanks for strengthening (by default) Rodney Tom's grip on the state Senate.
Posted by SuperSteve on February 28, 2014 at 10:27 PM · Report this
@18 That is the worst thing I've ever read from you. Seriously. "Oh, just move to Kansas or something. No big deal. That's like taking a bus across town. It's just a couple dollars, that's all. Don't worry if you don't know what's there. And once you're there, everybody will be so nice, pretty soon you'll have a house and a job. It's so easy! But Seattle is just not for poor people like you. I'm sorry."

How cold and dark does your heart have to be to deliberately cut essential aid for the neediest, without the slightest justification, just to score a political point? How hateful and shriveled does your soul have to be? Why is it that Republicans can't win statewide anymore? Where does their nasty reputation come from? This is one of the worst political stories from this state I've ever heard. If we could measure it with a meter, it would probably have set some sort of record.

For the love of god, somebody with some chops please run against Rodney Tom. There's zero excuse why he should still be there. These people are an actual menace to society. Forget the crazy, drunken hoboes. Be afraid of what Senate Republicans are doing to you. Because of Senate Republicans, you'll encounter even more crazy, drunken hoboes than before. This is a law-and-order, public-safety issue! Isn't that what Republicans were so supposedly good at?
Posted by floater on February 28, 2014 at 9:23 PM · Report this
Looks like she has a nephew in the Arkansas legislature:…
Posted by Pol Pot on February 28, 2014 at 8:44 PM · Report this
Lew Siffer 39
I love this session. Finally a centrist agenda.
Posted by Lew Siffer on February 28, 2014 at 7:34 PM · Report this
Joan McBride is an outstanding candidate to oust Rodney Tom. Send her your support.
Posted by BurbBarb on February 28, 2014 at 7:24 PM · Report this
kk in seattle 37
What fnarf @22 said. I never thought it possible to out-asshole Don Benton. Well, the Koch Brothers sure got their money's worth when they bought Senator Angel her new seat. She's been stewing in the House, just waiting until she could grab a gavel in the Senate to fuck over the poor.
Posted by kk in seattle on February 28, 2014 at 5:59 PM · Report this
@7 Former Mayor of Kirkland, Joan McBride is running against Tom as a Democrat. She's good.
Posted by Richard Thurston on February 28, 2014 at 5:52 PM · Report this
Posted by Hanoumatoi on February 28, 2014 at 5:28 PM · Report this
mr. herriman 34
@25: it's well established that SROTU is stupid and completely divorced from reality.
Posted by mr. herriman on February 28, 2014 at 5:22 PM · Report this
Aaron 33
I don't believe they have any homelessness in Medina. They ship it all to Seattle. Problem solved.
Posted by Aaron on February 28, 2014 at 5:21 PM · Report this
Frank Blethen's vodka distiller 32
@16 They should go to Medina. Plenty of room there.
Posted by Frank Blethen's vodka distiller on February 28, 2014 at 5:18 PM · Report this
Calling campaign to Angel's office is on. Phone number listed in Comment #1.
Posted by Calling Campaign on February 28, 2014 at 5:06 PM · Report this
Geez, Tom is piece of dirt, isn't he? I also just made a donation to Joan McBride's campaign. She's the former mayor of Kirkland. Donate NOW!
Posted by NotYourStrawMan on February 28, 2014 at 5:05 PM · Report this
Wow...I don't remember County Commissioner Angel voting against the use of those funds when she was on the Regional Council that decided where those funds would be used. I guess she is not so close to the people that benefit from roof over their heads any longer. As State Senator, she has lost her touch with the people in Kitsap County.
Posted by Narrows Bridge on February 28, 2014 at 4:58 PM · Report this
Rodney Tom is a fucking prick. I hope he goes down in flames. Thanks for the link @27, time to donate to his opponent. Anyone else?
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 28, 2014 at 4:52 PM · Report this
Joan McBride is running against Rodney Tom as a democrat. Http://
Posted by screed on February 28, 2014 at 4:27 PM · Report this
Angel and Tom are despicable human beings that will rot in day. Very glad for audio recording.
Posted by Angel and Tom will Rot on February 28, 2014 at 4:26 PM · Report this
@18 And you think those low-cost states are any more generous to their homeless populations? If you just don't give a shit, at least have the courage to say so. Statements like this just make the people who make them look stupid and completely divorced from reality.
Posted by maddogm13 on February 28, 2014 at 4:15 PM · Report this
@12. Yeah. I say we just stop funding ALL programs for the homeless. That way, the "homeless industry" will just die out. Problem solved! (As long as the problem is "I have to look at homeless people," and not "Homeless people are dying in the streets.")

Posted by Ruke on February 28, 2014 at 4:03 PM · Report this
@19 Yes they have, which is why, from their perspective, many republicans wouldn't see to need to fund a roof over a homeless person's head when they readily use the sidewalks, alleys and the local missions of those neighborhoods.

On the Rodney Tom tip, why don't Dems do what Republicans do when their people veer too far from the farm which is to run an opposition candidate from their party who is much more responsive to the base. But the dems are too weak, chicken sh*t and bought and paid for to do that.......Or maybe the people in that burb that he reps like him just fine for the reactionary that he is?
Posted by neo-realist on February 28, 2014 at 4:00 PM · Report this
Fnarf 22
What a fucking horrible piece of shit.

When you're pissing off DON FUCKING BENTON with an end-run around to the right, you're really off the charts. I didn't even think that was possible.
Posted by Fnarf on February 28, 2014 at 3:54 PM · Report this
Joe Szilagyi 21
@18 you should move to the caldera of Mt St Helens and start poking around in the snow with dynamite.
Posted by Joe Szilagyi on February 28, 2014 at 3:52 PM · Report this
You would think they would be enough bleeding heart liberals with couches to solve this problem?
Posted by And that's just in Fremont on February 28, 2014 at 3:51 PM · Report this
" non-Seattle legislators figure that the homeless will go to Seattle and settle in Pioneer Square or Belltown"

haven't they done that already?
Posted by And victor 'hick' steinbrueck park? on February 28, 2014 at 3:49 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 18
The ridiculously overpriced real estate market of Seattle and Washington State are the last place a homeless person should be.

Any low rent state or city would be a better option.

Funding these programs, many of which spend exorbitant amounts per person, is simply foolish.

Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe on February 28, 2014 at 3:49 PM · Report this
Wait, I thought King County liberals had a cure for homelessness?
Posted by Or did they loose the secret formula? on February 28, 2014 at 3:47 PM · Report this
Conservatives believe that the homeless are lazy undeserving bums so there's zero surprise. The non-Seattle legislators figure that the homeless will go to Seattle and settle in Pioneer Square or Belltown so for them, no big deal.
Posted by neo-realist on February 28, 2014 at 3:46 PM · Report this
How come I've never met a bum from Seattle?
Posted by And why do they all migrate here? on February 28, 2014 at 3:43 PM · Report this
rtm 14
Why doesn't Ed Murray make a phone call? I hear he's got great relations in Olympia. Maybe he can clear up this whole "who will pay for the tunnel" thing at the same time.
Posted by rtm on February 28, 2014 at 3:42 PM · Report this
Tom's district had better vote that son of a bitch out in the primary.
Posted by TechBear on February 28, 2014 at 3:39 PM · Report this
Don’t flies any more? Don’t put honey out!

Same goes for hobos and pigeons.
Posted by Just one more program & utopia is ours! on February 28, 2014 at 3:36 PM · Report this
Max Solomon 11
i'm not surprised. conservatives think that liberals in this state created homelessness. if you don't fund it, it will just go away, right?

that, or they know the odds are good that desperate people will be more likely to hit seattle liberals in the head with bricks, rather than suburban or rural conservatives.
Posted by Max Solomon on February 28, 2014 at 3:35 PM · Report this
fletc3her 10
@8 Agreed. One of the things I hate is when politicians tie the funding for something with a fee on something else. Taxes on cigarettes funding health programs. Even gas taxes funding roads. Even in situations like this where it seems to make sense it creates perverse incentives as the decline in smoking guts the programs designed to help fund health programs or the increase in vehicle gas mileage guts the highway funds. Unless there is a very good reason everything should go through the general fund.
Posted by fletc3her on February 28, 2014 at 3:32 PM · Report this
There are no words strong enough to convey my horror and disgust at these underhanded tactics. It is clear that our Republican state leaders have absolutely no concern for the people of Washington State. It is clear that Rodney Tom has sold his soul to the devil. I wonder if he thinks it is worth it? I also agree with @8. Funding for state programs should not be subject to such flimsy whims as this. Also, Jan Angel is no angel.
Posted by SeattleKim on February 28, 2014 at 3:32 PM · Report this
keshmeshi 8
Point one: Rodney Tom is trash.

Point two: How fucked up is our state that important programs are funded by fucking fees (that can be rescinded at any time) and not by real taxes?
Posted by keshmeshi on February 28, 2014 at 3:25 PM · Report this
Can you regularly remind us who is running to unseat Rodney Tom? I have a credit card that needs using, and I'd guess I'm not alone.
Posted by avatar on February 28, 2014 at 3:25 PM · Report this
Dr. Z 6
And for a second act, she will smash some babies' heads against a wall.
Posted by Dr. Z on February 28, 2014 at 3:17 PM · Report this
Republican = Terrorist
Posted by Pol Pot on February 28, 2014 at 3:16 PM · Report this
fletc3her 4
Defunding programs for the homeless... do they really need a deal to do make them want to do that?
Posted by fletc3her on February 28, 2014 at 3:14 PM · Report this
Posted by Call me Scott on February 28, 2014 at 3:10 PM · Report this
> "It's not clear if Rodney Tom did this as a favor to bankers
> and realtors or out of political retribution,"

The buyer almost always pays the recording fees, so this is not much of a favor to the bankers or realtors - this is just him being a full-on dick.
Posted by ThrowItAway on February 28, 2014 at 3:08 PM · Report this
fletc3her 1
I called and yelled at the asshole at her Olympia office: (360) 786-7650. This unspeakable swearword is my fucking Senator. I'm so ashamed.
Posted by fletc3her on February 28, 2014 at 3:06 PM · Report this

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