Good morning. Today is Wednesday, the 17th day of the 105-day session.
Sen. Paull Shin, D-Mukilteo, introduced a bill that would allow state universities and The Evergreen State College to establish three-year, accelerated bachelor’s degree programs. The programs would have to be approved by the Higher Education Coordinating Board.
Sen. Rosemary McAuliffe, D-Bothell, introduced a bill that would require that schools in the area where a juvenile offender plans to live be notified when a juvenile who committed a violent offense, a sex offense or stalking is released. Rep. Cathy Dahlquist, R-Enumclaw, introduced a similar bill in the House at the request of the superintendent of public instruction.
Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson, D-Seattle, introduced a bill that would legalize marijuana possession and use for people 21 and older and would allow it to be sold at state liquor stores. In a news release announcing the proposal, Dickerson said doing so could raise $400 million for the state each biennium.
Sen. Debbie Regala, D-Tacoma, introduced a bill at the request of the Department of Ecology that would prohibit the use of wood stoves in houses that have other heat sources when air quality is low in an area.
Rep. Cary Condotta, R-East Wenatchee, introduced a bill that would tie minimum wage changes to changes in the consumer price index.
Hearings are scheduled in the House and Senate for bills that would set up a foreclosure mediation process in Washington. House Bill 1362, sponsored by Rep. Tina Orwall, D-Des Moines, and Senate Bill 5275 by Sen. Adam Kline, D-Seattle, would require lenders to have a face-to-face meeting with borrowers facing foreclosure, to review homeowners’ finances and to set up loan modifications if the owners are eligible.
The Senate Transportation Committee will hold a hearing on Senate Bill 5016, sponsored by Sen. Scott White, D-Seattle, that would prohibit smoking in cars with child passengers.
The Senate Committee on Higher Education and Workforce Development will hold a hearing on Senate Bill 5107 that would create one 19-member board of regents for the state college and universities. The board would be able to establish admissions requirements and set up new departments.
The House Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Committee will hold a hearing on House Bill 1145, requested by Attorney General Rob McKenna, that would make it a class C felony to steal mail.
The National Federation of Independent Businesses is holding its annual lobbying day in Olympia, which will focus on small-business needs.