Sunday, September 26, 2021

Play

New Yorkers voice concerns about the creation of not one, but two draft maps for congressional and state voting districts; and providers ask the Supreme Court to act on Texas' new abortion law.

Play

The January 6th committee subpoenas former Trump officials; a Senate showdown looms over the debt ceiling; the CDC okays COVID boosters for seniors; and advocates testify about scams targeting the elderly.

Play

A new Oklahoma museum honors tribal nations, while Iowa's history is back on the blacktop; mixed news on COVID-19 comes with a warning about unconventional drugs; and electric cars and buses are coming to rural America.

Stymied in Legislature, WA Home-Kitchen Backers Won't Give Up

Play

Friday, February 14, 2020   

SEATTLE -- While a bill to legalize home kitchens for businesses has died in the Washington state Legislature, supporters believe the effort helped create momentum for next session.

Under current law, food for public sale has to be prepared in a commercial kitchen. That creates barriers, especially for small-business owners who lack space. That's where "microenterprise" home kitchens could come in to fill the gap.

Will Von Geldern, director of advocacy and communications at Ventures, a Seattle-based nonprofit for entrepreneurs, said allowing food preparation only in commercial kitchens makes sense in theory but doesn't meet a growing need.

"There's also a severe lack of commercial kitchen space across the state and the available spaces are very expensive," he said. "So, that can be cost-prohibitive for low-income folks -- and many of those are women, people of color or new immigrants who are looking to achieve financial security."

Von Geldern said he was working with the Department of Health on the bill to create a home kitchen pilot project. While it didn't pan out, he believes there's a good structure in place for next year. The legislation included a requirement for annual permit renewals from a local public health board and a limit of 30 meals per day or 150 per week.

Von Geldern said he believes legalizing microenterprise home kitchens also could be a boon for rural communities.

"We see this as a really big opportunity for rural business owners," he said. "In urban contexts, for example, accessing a commercial kitchen may be possible but very expensive. In a rural community, you might just not have access to it."

In 2018, California legalized microenterprise home kitchens. Von Geldern said efforts in Washington state are informed by that law.

The text of the bill, HB 2777, is online at lawfilesext.leg.wa.gov.


get more stories like this via email

The climate resilience package includes $1.5 billion for measures to better defend the state against wildfires. (Peter Buschmann/U.S. Forest Service)

Environment

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Climate activists are praising Gov. Gavin Newsom for signing a $15 billion climate action package Thursday, but argued he …


Social Issues

BROOKLYN, N.Y. -- Some New Yorkers are voicing concerns about the creation of not one, but two draft maps for congressional, State Senate and …

Social Issues

LANSING, Mich. -- Michigan advocates for children and families are praising many of the investments in the 2022 state budget passed this week…


According to the World Health Organization, about one in six people age 60 years and older experienced some form of abuse in community settings during the past year. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

DES MOINES, Iowa -- There is strong public support in Iowa to enact a state law that criminalizes elder abuse, a topic also being discussed by law …

Environment

SALT LAKE CITY -- A researcher at the University of Utah said plans for generating renewable energy should include a power source right under our feet…

Roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants reside in the United States. (JP Photography/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

CHICAGO -- Advocates for immigrants and refugees in Illinois traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to push for a pathway to citizenship for up to …

Environment

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Arkansas produces more rice than any other state, and a new grant will help farmers explore ways to transition the industry to …

Social Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. -- North Dakota lawmakers in charge of redistricting have approved a preliminary draft of new legislative boundaries, but voters' …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021