Today is Tuesday, April 23, the 100th day of the 105-day legislative session.
"So here we are in the Senate changing the rules again. And the irony is that this is called increasing education funding, when we're actually asking our school districts to lower levies that we asked them to raise a couple years ago."
-Sen. Christine Rolfes, D-Bainbridge Island, speaking in opposition to a proposal that would require a reduction in school levy lids. Senate Bill 5898 ultimately passed after a 28-20 vote.
Controversial environmental legislation cleared the Senate on Monday with a nearly party-line vote. Proponents of Republican Sen. Doug Ericksen’s bill have said it will create a new green-jobs fund that will go toward toxic cleanups. Opponents of Senate Bill 5296 have said the measure would divert money from state programs that deal with hazardous management planning and inspections. The bill is now headed for the House.
TODAY IN THE LEGISLATURE
The House Finance Committee will meet at 8 a.m. for a possible vote on House Bill 2038, a tax proposal aimed at funding education by extending the time frame of some current taxes and eliminating select tax breaks. Also on the schedule is Senate Bill 5843, a measure that would require every new tax break to provide a statement of legislative intent and include an expiration date where applicable. The meeting is scheduled for Hearing Room B of the John L. O’Brien Building.
At the same time, lawmakers on the House Appropriations Committee have scheduled possible votes on a number of bills, including a measure that would delay the implementation of the family leave insurance program until funding and payment of benefits are authorized in law. The 8 a.m. meeting will be in Hearing Room A of the John L. O’Brien Building.
WEDNESDAY IN THE LEGISLATURE
The House Committee on Public Safety has tentatively scheduled an executive session for 8 a.m. on a proposal that would toughen DUI laws. Among other things, House Bill 2030 would require an ignition interlock device to be installed on an impounded vehicle before it is released. The meeting is scheduled for Hearing Room D of the John L. O’Brien Building.
Lawmakers on the House Committee on Technology and Economic Development have scheduled a possible vote on a bill that would exempt large private airplanes from certain registration requirements. House Bill 1707 would also exempt certain airplane sales and related labor and service charges from the retail sales and use tax. The public meeting is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. in Hearing Room C of the John L. O’Brien Building.
ELSEWHERE ON CAMPUS
Today, seventh-graders from Kamiakin Middle School will hold a band concert in the Rotunda of the Legislative Building. The performance is scheduled for 12:15 p.m.
On Wednesday, representatives of The Washington Good Spirits Council will hold a 10 a.m. news conference on the north steps of the Legislative Building. The council’s website says the group is concerned about “the unreasonable taxes and fees that have been driving locals and tourists across our borders in search of reasonable spirits prices.”Olympian staff report