Under the Dome: Legislative highlights for March 8

THE OLYMPIANMarch 8, 2012 

For additional coverage of the Legislature, go to www.theolympian.com/ underthedome.

Today is Thursday, March 8, the final day of the 60-day session.

QUOTED

“No, you don’t get to eat. You should have done that three weeks ago.”

– Rep. Ross Hunter, House Ways and Means committee chairman, joking before a break in a committee meeting.

“It means our kids’ future is basically down the sewer hole.”

– Sen. Sharon Nelson, D-Maury Island, speaking of the GOP-led budget passed by the Senate, at a rally held by the Washington State Association of Head Start and Early Child Education and Assistance Program.

SPECIAL SESSION

Gov. Chris Gregoire told reporters Wednesday that lawmakers would need a special session to finish the budget but that she’s waiting to officially call it and wants them to hammer out a plan before the end of the regular session at midnight today.

TODAY

Gregoire will sign an overhaul of Washington’s teacher-evaluation system into law at noon. Student improvement, measured by test scores, would be part of the evaluations under Senate Bill 5895. The changes expand on a four-level pilot system put in place in 2010.

FLOOR ACTION

Lawmakers passed a resolution to recognize the Paddle to Squaxin 2012. More than 100 tribal canoes will arrive in Olympia this July, followed by several days of cultural festivities. More than 15,000 visitors are expected.

Compiled by staff writer Alexis Krell.

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