News

Inslee signs Wylie’s “foot spa” bill to crack down on human trafficking and prostitution

April 17, 2015 - Rep. Sharon Wylie

Inslee signs Wylie’s “foot spa” bill to crack down on human trafficking and prostitution

OLYMPIA—This morning Governor Jay Inslee signed into law a bill that imposes new criminal penalties on massage and reflexology business owners who knowingly allow unlicensed practice in their businesses.  This bill is intended to solve the problem of massage parlors that are a cover for the sex trade industry. “We have this new law thanks to neighbors and city leaders in my community pulling together and speaking up about a problem that the city of Vancouver did not have the … Continue reading

Snohomish lawmakers successfully add $152 million in projects to transportation package proposal

April 15, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

OLYMPIA—Last night the House Transportation Committee approved amended versions of both the Transportation Revenue bill, ESSB 5987, on a 17-8 vote, and the Transportation spending bill, ESSB 5988, on a 16-9 vote.  Dozens of amendments were offered in the 3.5 hour executive session; among those approved were projects and improvements sponsored by Snohomish area lawmakers Reps. Mike Sells, Lillian Ortiz-Self and Luis Moscoso, which focused specifically on the Snohomish area, totaling $152 million worth of transportation projects. “These don’t come … Continue reading

Seattle Times Article – State Dems, GOP not far apart on transportation plan

April 14, 2015 - Rep. Jessyn Farrell

Seattle Times Article – State Dems, GOP not far apart on transportation plan

State Dems, GOP not far apart on transportation plan Originally published April 13, 2015 at 12:13 pm Updated April 13, 2015 at 7:47 pm State House Democrats released a transportation plan Monday that is similar to the Republican proposal that already passed the Senate, funding projects with an 11.7-cent boost in the gas tax. “This project list is not all that different from what we had passed out of the House in 2013,” said Rep. Jessyn Farrell, D-Seattle. By Joseph … Continue reading

Orwall’s DNA bills headed to Inslee’s desk

April 14, 2015 - Rep. Tina Orwall

Orwall’s DNA bills headed to Inslee’s desk

OLYMPIA—Two measures relating to DNA evidence were approved by the Senate and are on their way to Gov. Inslee’s desk for his signature. Justice isn’t very well served when more than 6,000 rape kits are currently sitting on police department shelves across the state with no testing date in sight. But that’s about to change thanks to a measure requiring that all sexual examination kits be tested going forward. The main reason given for not testing these kits is that … Continue reading

House passes YEAR Act

April 13, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

House passes YEAR Act

OLYMPIA – Today, in a 95-2 vote the House passed Senate Bill 5564, the Youth Equality and Reintegration ACT (YEAR Act). State Rep. Ruth Kagi, D-Seattle sponsored the House companion bill. “Being poor isn’t a crime. And it shouldn’t mean a life sentence,” said Kagi on the House Floor. “All children who make mistakes, rich or poor, deserve a second chance. But currently the system is too burdensome, adding thousands of dollars in court fees to a sentence, so only … Continue reading

House Releases Updated Transportation Revenue Package

April 13, 2015 - Rep. Judy Clibborn

House Democrats have released a new plan for transportation revenue and investment, making a handful of changes to the proposal they passed two years ago and setting up a new round of negotiations with the Senate. “A robust, modern transportation system is critical to our economy and our quality of life here in Washington,” said Transportation Chair Judy Clibborn (D-Mercer Island). “This package will create jobs, combat traffic congestion, and connect the communities of our state together.” “This package builds … Continue reading

Bipartisan amendment would provide seed money for bi-state bridge coalition

April 10, 2015 - Rep. Sharon Wylie

Bipartisan amendment would provide seed money for bi-state bridge coalition

The Washington State House of Representatives has approved an amendment that would provide $100,000 for the creation of a bi-state legislative work group to seek solutions for a bridge crossing over the Columbia River between Vancouver and Portland. Rep. Liz Pike, R-Camas, who worked with Rep. Sharon Wylie, D-Vancouver, to author the amendment, said it is a new beginning to bring people together two years after some Washington lawmakers rejected the $3 billion Columbia River Crossing (CRC) project. “We knew after the … Continue reading

Rep. Sawyer: Pierce County, Lakewood Councils can no longer ban pot without public vote

April 10, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

Rep. Sawyer: Pierce County, Lakewood Councils can no longer ban pot without public vote

OLYMPIA – In 2012, Washington voters passed Initiative 502 to legalize recreational marijuana by a 57 percent vote. In Pierce County, I-502 passed in every district, 54 percent overall. The initiative also passed in every Lakewood precinct in the 29th Legislative District, represented by Rep. David Sawyer (D – Lakewood). But despite strong approval from the people of Lakewood and greater Pierce County, the councils in both jurisdictions decided to ignore the clear will of their constituents by banning recreational marijuana … Continue reading

Great school, great students

April 3, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

Great school, great students

In a wonderful coincidence, less than 24 hours after my fellow House Democrats and I approved a state operating budget that fully funds basic education in our K-12 schools, I was privileged to meet here at the Capitol with three classes from Federal Way’s Brigadoon Elementary School — “The Home of Spunky McPaws!”  It was obvious from the caliber of questions the students asked that their parents, their teachers and the whole staff at Brigadoon are doing a lot of … Continue reading

House passes $3.7 billion construction budget

April 3, 2015 - Rep. Hans Dunshee

House passes $3.7 billion construction budget

Builds schools, colleges, mental health facilities OLYMPIA – Democrats and Republicans in the House united behind a capital budget that would put billions of dollars to work for construction projects, with most of that construction focused on education and higher education. “This will build classrooms for kids and computer labs for universities,” said Rep. Hans Dunshee (D-Snohomish), chair of the Capital Budget Committee. “It will also create thousands of jobs for men and women in hard hats while fixing parks … Continue reading

State capital budget invests $2 million in Federal Way Performing Arts and Conference Center

April 2, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

A statement from Rep. Carol Gregory (D-Federal Way, 30th district) “I want to publicly thank Chair Hans Dunshee and my fellow lawmakers who serve on the House Capital Budget Committee for including a key investment of $2 million in Federal Way’s Performing Arts and Conference Center. “Our city and our region are growing and thriving, economically, culturally and recreationally.  When completed, the PACC will give Federal Way and our neighboring communities in south King County a brand-new landmark that will contribute … Continue reading

As Seen on TV(W)

April 1, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

As Seen on TV(W)

  We’re fortunate here in Washington to have almost universal access to TVW, often described as our state’s version of C-SPAN.  TVW offers wall-to-wall coverage of the Legislature, and produces outstanding public-affairs programs like “The Impact,” which airs Wednesdays at 7 p.m. and encores throughout the following week.  As vice chair of the budget-writing House Appropriations Committee, I was a guest on the April 1 edition of that program to talk with host Anita Kissée about the House version of the … Continue reading

Rep. Pat Sullivan and Rep. Reuven Carlyle response to Senate Republican Budget Release

March 31, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

Rep. Pat Sullivan and Rep. Reuven Carlyle response to Senate Republican Budget Release

R’s rely on “…gimmicks, gambles and a lot of marijuana.” “House Democrats proposed a sustainable budget that began fixing our unfair tax system while making critical, ongoing investments in education, mental health care and other vital services. “Unfortunately, Senate Republicans have given us an unsustainable budget that relies on gimmicks, gambles and a lot of marijuana. It is a budget that barely provides short-term relief to long-term problems. “Their proposal shifts money from one program to another to make it … Continue reading

Statement from Rep. Carol Gregory on the proposed current-law state Transportation Budget

March 31, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

“I’m pleased that the transportation budget released this week by House Transportation Chair Rep. Judy Clibborn provides funding for the state to make substantial progress on, and in some cases complete, more than a dozen significant transportation projects in the 30th legislative district. Improving the I-5/SR 161/SR 18 interchange is the largest single project, and it will also be the most noticeable to motorists. But many other projects are also included, projects that will help with traffic flow, ease the … Continue reading

Rep. Sherry Appleton resumes service on state Sentencing Guidelines Commission

March 30, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

Rep. Sherry Appleton resumes service on state Sentencing Guidelines Commission

After a two-year hiatus, State Rep. Sherry Appleton (D-Poulsbo, 23rd district) was appointed on Friday (Mar. 27) to serve once again as a member of the Washington State Sentencing Guidelines Commission. According to its website, the Sentencing Guidelines Commission is directed by state law “to evaluate and monitor adult and juvenile sentencing policies and practices, recommend modifications to the governor and the Legislature and serve as a clearinghouse and information center on adult and juvenile sentencing.” Appleton served on the … Continue reading

MEDIA ADVISORY: Closing the opportunity gap press conference

March 27, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

MEDIA ADVISORY: Closing the opportunity gap press conference

OLYMPIA—Next Wednesday, Representatives Sharon Tomiko Santos (D-Seattle), Lillian Ortiz-Self (D-Mukilteo), Ruth Kagi (D-Seattle) and Brady Walkinshaw (D-Seattle) will hold a press conference on how the House Democratic operating budget helps close the opportunity gap by addressing the educational needs of all students from cradle to career. The event will be held in Seattle at El Centro de la Raza at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1. The legislators will be joined by other House Democrats, including lawmakers from the Members … Continue reading

Media advisory: 19th District lawmakers host town hall by phone April 1

March 26, 2015 - Rep. Dean Takko

Thursday, March 26, 2015 MEDIA ADVISORY WHO: Please join 19th District lawmakers Sen. Brian Hatfield, Rep. Brian Blake and Rep. Dean Takko WHAT: A town hall by telephone–a chance for you to ask questions of your local lawmakers. WHEN: 6 p.m. April 1 WHY:  The 19th District is huge, and we’ve found that town halls by telephone are convenient for folks who can’t drive to Aberdeen or Longview if we’re having an in-person town hall there. This is another way … Continue reading

Rep. Mike Sells’ e-Newsletter for March 25, 2015

March 25, 2015 - Rep. Mike Sells

Rep. Mike Sells’ e-Newsletter for March 25, 2015

We had a great turn out at the town hall, thank you to everyone who gave up part of their Saturday morning to come out and address some of the pressing issues facing our area. If you missed it, take a look at my legislative video update where I discuss education funding, WSU Everett, and accountability for aerospace tax breaks. —————————————————  Investments in our education system are rightly a main concern for constituents, so I want to provide some additional … Continue reading

Early starts and second chances

March 19, 2015 - Washington House Democrats

Early starts and second chances

Town Hall Meeting Every year during the busy legislative session representatives head back to their home districts to host town hall gatherings. Last Saturday morning dedicated constituents of the 37th Legislative District gathered over coffee and doughnuts to get an update about the session and discuss issues of importance to them. This year, Rep. Pettigrew was joined by Rep. Santos and Sen. Jayapal. The top concerns from the community included education, funding for the safetynet and fixing our unfair tax system. … Continue reading

Companion bills would allow personal marijuana home grows

March 19, 2015 - Rep. Brian Blake

Companion bills would allow personal marijuana home grows

Clarity, limited bureaucracy and patient protections are the goals of bipartisan marijuana legislation introduced today by Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle, and Rep. Brian Blake, D-Aberdeen. Senate Bill 6083, sponsored by Kohl-Welles, and House Bill 2196, sponsored by Blake, would permit individuals 21 years of age or older grow up to six marijuana plants for personal use. Only one home grow would be allowed per residence. Anyone who grows marijuana for personal use would be able to possess up to 8 … Continue reading