Good morning. Today is Friday, the 54th day of the 105-day session.
Sen. Maralyn Chase, D-Shoreline, introduced Senate Bill 5863, which would add a two-cent tax on plastic bags. Because it would add a tax, the measure probably would need to get a two-thirds vote in the Legislature under Initiative 1053, which voters approved in November.
The Senate unanimously passed Senate Bill 5000, which would require a 12-hour impound on vehicles belonging to a person who is arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
The House passed House Bill 1202, to allow sampling in liquor stores, and House Bill 1172, a proposal to allow beer and wine tasting at farmers markets. Senate Bill 5029, a similar farmers market proposal, already passed the Senate.
The House also passed House Bill 1339, which would increase the penalties for negligent drivers who hit a biker or pedestrian. It follows a similar measure, Senate Bill 5326, which passed a Senate floor vote Feb. 24.
Wednesday evening, the House passed House Bill 1362, which would set up foreclosure mediation for eligible homeowners in the state. The measure would also make it a violation of the Consumer Protection Act if lending institutions fail to comply.
Also in the House, lawmakers approved House Bill 1849, a proposal to set up a council to study the state’s education-governance system and submit recommendations to the Legislature about how to improve it.
The measure was introduced by Rep. Kathy Haigh as an alternative to a proposal by Gov. Chris Gregoire to create an Education Department overseen by a Cabinet-level secretary.
The House Labor and Workforce Development Committee is scheduled to vote on House Bill 1511, a proposal to limit the benefits ferry workers can get through collective bargaining. Lawmakers said doing so was a necessary first step in reining in ferry-system costs in the state. Starting midmorning, the House and Senate are scheduled to hold floor sessions most of the day as they move toward Monday’s deadline for voting bills out of their houses of origin.
On the Capitol Campus, the Latino Civic Alliance is hosting Latino Legislative Day starting at 8 a.m., and the Service Employees International Union is holding “Purple Presence” day starting at noon.