An effort to have a J.P. Patches license plate created for the State of Washington is gaining steam in the legislature for 2021, and Patches Pals everywhere are excited.
Those who grew up in the Pacific Northwest (at least of a “certain age”) know how beloved and significant J.P. Patches and Gertrude were to our culture. Played by Chris Wedes (J.P.) and Bob Newman (Gertrude, who sadly passed away Dec. 13), they created one of the longest running children’s television shows in American history (1958 – 1981), and were an important part of the fabric of our community for decades after.
In order to commemorate and pay tribute to their legacy, organizers are working to galvanize the community to support the creation of a Patches Pals Washington State special license plate. They have met their goal of 3,500 signatures from Washington state residents in order to be considered by the Department of Licensing.
Proceeds from the plates will benefit Seattle Children’s cancer immunotherapy research with worldwide implications for potentially curing childhood cancers using a patient’s own immune system.
“Thank you to all Patches Pals, members of Gertrude’s Gang, and Boris Buddies that have supported the JP Patches license plate effort,” organizers said. “The next legislative session begins January 11 and we’ll be pressing hard for passage of the bill this year. Unfortunately, Bob Newman (Gertrude) passed away on December 13, but he was aware of our efforts and excited to see the license plate moving forward.”
The bill stalled at the Senate Floor vote over the last two years, but organizers have been soliciting additional support over the summer, including key members of the Transportation and Rules Committees, as well as legislative leadership.
Perhaps Miss Smith’s Delivery Service will lend a hand?
But seriously, now they need your help.
“Beginning the week of January 4, and every week after that, we need every one of you to email and call members of the House and Senate, encouraging them to support and pass the JP Patches license plate bill. We’ll provide you with an email template and the addresses – all you have to do is send it and add your name. We’ll also provide phone numbers in case you want to call.”
So clear your calendar and be ready to take action.
The legislative session began on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. Patches Pals should communicate with members of the House Transportation Committee immediately to voice support for the JP Patches license plate bill.
Seattle Children’s and J.P. Patches have a long history together going back to the early 1960’s. J.P. & Gertrude often visited the hospital, entertaining patients, families, and staff. During the 1970’s, J.P. and friends made a significant donation to the hospital, funding the J.P. Patches Playroom. The J.P. and Gertrude statue, located in Fremont, also generated a significant gift for Seattle Children’s at the behest of Chris Wedes and his wife, Joanie.
Over time, it is expected that the special J.P. Patches license plate could raise as much as $250,000 or more for cancer immunotherapy research at Seattle Children’s. Immunotherapy is a groundbreaking new treatment that harnesses the power of a patient’s immune system in order to seek and destroy cancer cells, limiting the need for toxic treatments like chemotherapy and radiation.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT, PATCHES PALS!
“Thank you to all Patches Pals, members of Gertrude’s Gang, and Boris Buddies that have supported the JP Patches license plate effort,” organizers said.
The next legislative session begins this week, they’ll be pressing hard for passage of the bill this year.
What is the process for license plate approval?
Like any state bill, the JP Patches license plate bill must:
- Be approved by the House Transportation Committee
- Be approved by the House Rules Committee
- Receive a majority vote on the House Floor, which is controlled by House Leadership
- Be approved by the Senate Transportation Committee
- Be approved by the Senate Rules Committee
- Receive a majority vote on the Senate Floor, which is controlled by Senate Leadership
- Be signed by the Governor
At each phase, fans of the license plate will need to express their support to the appropriate legislators.
How can I stay informed about bill progress?
Updates are posted weekly in the JP Patches Pals Facebook group.
How can I help?
We need you to raise your voice in support of the license plate bill, by communicating with the legislature.
Share this information via social media using this link.
Contact the major television stations (KOMO, KING, KIRO, KCPQ/FOX), your local newspaper, and your local news media and ask them to report on the bill.
Use your contacts, particularly if they’re in local media, and encourage them to post, share, and report about the bill.
How can I communicate with legislators?
Telephone calls and emails are the most effective way to voice your support for the license plate bill, particularly if you’re a constituent. Phone numbers can be found by clicking the links above – and pre-written emails can be sent by clicking the links below. All you have to do is add your name, address, phone number and email.
IMPORTANT! PLEASE ADD THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION TO THE BOTTOM OF THE EMAIL:
Click here to send pre-written email to all members of the HOUSE TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE
Click here to send pre-written email to all members of the HOUSE RULES COMMITTEE
Click here to send pre-written email to all members of the HOUSE LEADERSHIP
Click here to send pre-written email to all members of the SENATE TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE
Click here to send pre-written email to all members of the SENATE RULES COMMITTEE
If the links above do not work for you, click here for an email template to copy and paste yourself.