Politics & Government

Legislature: Day 26, Friday, Feb. 4

Good morning. Today is Friday, the 26th day of the 105-day session.


Rep. Eileen Cody, D-West Seattle, introduced House Bill 1847, which would close some tax exemptions in an effort to fund the state’s subsidized health insurance program, Basic Health. The measure would eliminate tax exemptions for coal at the TransAlta power plant and increase taxes on private planes, cosmetic surgery and banks.

Rep. Glenn Anderson, R-Issaquah, introduced House Bill 1816, which would give higher-education institutions in the state – including The Evergreen State College – some tuition-setting authority, give a tax credit to companies that offer student internships and set up an exam that college juniors would take that would be used to allot places in upper-division classes. Under the bill, state universities could charge school districts if students who come out of them have to take high school-level classes in college.

Rep. Jeff Morris, D-Anacortes, introduced a bill, House Bill 1823, that would repeal the authorization for local governments to set up automated traffic cameras. The bill is one of several under consideration in the Legislature that would limit the use of the cameras.

Rep. Phyllis Gutierrez Kenney, D-Seattle, introduced House Bill 1822, a companion to a bill by Sen. Jim Kastama, D-Puyallup, that would establish a nonprofit online university.

Sen. Nick Harper, D-Everett, introduced Senate Bill 5649, which would limit how long and under what conditions dog owners can tether their dogs outside. The measure would prohibit leaving dogs out overnight, for more than 10 hours at a time or in cold or hot weather without shelter. Rep. Roger Goodman introduced a companion bill, House Bill 1755.

Harper also introduced Senate Bill 5650, which would allow craft distilleries to apply for an endorsement that they could use to sell bottled spirits at farmers markets.

Rep. Kevin Van De Wege, D-Sequim, introduced House Bill 1809, which would give in-state contractors a 7 percent advantage when they bid on projects funded by the state. A companion bill, Senate Bill 5662, was introduced by Sen. Steve Conway, D-Tacoma.

Rep. Ross Hunter, D-Medina, introduced House Bill 1817, which would replace the goldfinch with the great blue heron as the state’s official bird.


The Senate could take floor action on Senate Bill 5135, which would reduce or cap unemployment insurance rates for employers.

The House Committee on Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness is scheduled to vote on House Bill 1126, an anti-gangs bill requested by Attorney General Rob McKenna. The measure would toughen penalties for gang-related crimes and would set up a grant program for gang-prevention programs.

The Senate Committee on Human Services and Corrections will hold a hearing on Senate Bill 5428, which would require the state to notify the school board in the area where an offender 21 or younger who has been convicted of a violent offense, a sex offense or stalking plans to reside.

The Senate Higher Education and Workforce Development Committee will hold a hearing on Senate Bill 5217, which would allow students to be appointed to the boards of trustees for community colleges.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on Senate Bill 5326, which would create harsher penalties for people who are driving negligently and hurt or kill a biker, pedestrian or other “vulnerable user” of a public road.