State/Local Governmnet & Tribal Affairs

Rep. Appleton retains chairmanship of House Community Development, Housing & Tribal Affairs Committee

December 17, 2014 - Washington House Democrats

Once again, State Rep. Sherry Appleton (D-23rd, Poulsbo) has been tapped by her colleagues to chair the House committee on Community Development, Housing & Tribal Affairs.  The panel is charged with considering issues relating to, among other things, community development, veteran-related legislation, tourism and the government-to-government relationship of the state and Indian tribes. The committee also considers bills relating to housing, including the accessibility and affordability of housing, state assistance to low-income housing, housing authorities, and the Housing Finance Commission. … Continue reading

Process for choosing a President closer to changing

April 25, 2014 - Washington House Democrats

Process for choosing a President closer to changing

The highly contested 2000 presidential election refocused attention on the way the United States elects its chief executive. George W. Bush won the Electoral College vote, but lost the popular vote to then Vice-President Al Gore. In 2009, the Washington Legislature added our state to a movement known as the National Popular Vote (NPV) interstate compact. The NPV is an agreement among various states and the District of Columbia to replace their current rules regarding the apportionment of presidential electors … Continue reading

State improves in elections administration, but falls in rankings

April 14, 2014 - Washington House Democrats

State improves in elections administration, but falls in rankings

The good news is that the administration of elections in Washington state improved from 2008 to 2012, according to an interactive online report from the Pew Charitable Trusts. The not-so-good news is that the state fell four spots, to No. 12, in the report’s nationwide rankings, as other states improved more than Washington. Still, Washington is one of just seven states to rank in the top 25 percent nationwide in 2008, 2010 and 2012. The report looks at each state’s … Continue reading

State one step closer to accepting public works bids electronically

February 17, 2014 - Rep. Monica Stonier

State one step closer to accepting public works bids electronically

The House passed legislation today to integrate technology in the bidding process for state work. “This bill is an effort to make sure doing business in Washington is more efficient and less costly,” Stonier said. “If we can pay our bills online, we can make it easier for businesses to submit their bids by allowing them to do so electronically.” Sponsored by Rep. Monica Stonier (D-Vancouver), House Bill 1841 will allow state agencies authorized to conduct competitive bidding public works … Continue reading

Rep. Sells’ Legislative Update for January 31, 2014

January 31, 2014 - Rep. Mike Sells

Rep. Sells’ Legislative Update for January 31, 2014

This busy third week of session ended on a particularly high note – we honored the men and women of Washington’s National Guard in both the House and Senate Friday. It’s a very moving experience to meet some of the Guard’s citizen-soldiers and airmen who do so much for our state. Did you know? With approximately 640,000 veteran residents, Washington state has the 12th largest veteran population in the United States.  When combined with the over 62,000 active duty military … Continue reading

Making ‘one person-one vote’ a reality for all

January 30, 2014 - Washington House Democrats

Making ‘one person-one vote’ a reality for all

While other states around the country are passing all kinds of restrictions on voters, the Washington House of Representatives passed four bills this week emphasizing fairness, efficiency, and yes, inclusion in our elections system. The legislation addresses what is, frankly, a scandalous, beyond-inconvenient truth. In the historic 2008 election, more than 6 million eligible, qualified American citizens didn’t vote.  The Evergreen State is no frontrunner in the voting department, either. Turnout here in our last general was far under 50 … Continue reading

House OKs elections bills highlighting fairness, efficiency

January 27, 2014 - nietol

House OKs elections bills highlighting fairness, efficiency

Equity, common sense emphasized in voting measures sent over to the Senate  The state House of Representatives today approved plans for major improvements in the elections system. Aimed at helping turn the “one person-one vote” American dream into a reality for every Washingtonian, five elections bills cleared the House and were sent on to the Senate. Although rights don’t come much more American than voting, far too many citizens today are systematically and systemically denied a fair shake at marking … Continue reading

ASK LUIS: Rep. Luis Moscoso responds to emails from constituents

January 21, 2014 - Rep. Luis Moscoso

ASK LUIS: Rep. Luis Moscoso responds to emails from constituents

Marijuana: Who makes the rules?

November 13, 2013 - Washington House Democrats

​A city library in Washington state can’t bar you from bringing your gun inside the building – but can a city prohibit you from opening a retail marijuana store 1,001 feet away? That question seems likely to be raised soon, for resolution in either the courts or the Legislature. It’s legal under state law to carry a gun, and it soon will be legal under state law to sell marijuana at a state-licensed store (though not within 1,000 feet of … Continue reading

Statement from Reps. Sam Hunt and Luis Moscoso on the Supreme Court’s Voting Rights Act ruling

June 26, 2013 - Reps. Sam Hunt and Luis Moscoso

Statement from Reps. Sam Hunt and Luis Moscoso on the Supreme Court’s Voting Rights Act ruling

Washington Voting Rights Act sponsors, Rep. Sam Hunt (D-Olympia), who chairs the House Government Operations and Elections Committee, and Rep. Luis Moscoso (D-Mountlake Terrace) released the following statement in response to this week’s Supreme Court ruling on the Voting Rights Act: “We are disappointed with the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act. The whole point of the law is to ensure and uphold the voting rights of all people, regardless of race and … Continue reading

McCoy will impart real-world perspectives in MPA program

May 1, 2013 - Rep. John McCoy

State Rep. John McCoy has already worn more hats in his personal and professional lives than about anyone else you could name. Don’t look now, but he’s about to don yet another impressive piece of headwear. McCoy has accepted an opportunity to share his real-world knowledge and experience in the upcoming 2013-2014 academic year with students at The Evergreen State College (TESC). The veteran lawmaker, and Tulalip-tribal and Snohomish County community leader will teach as an adjunct professor in Evergreen’s … Continue reading

Rep. Luis Moscoso on Comcast Newsmakers

March 21, 2013 - Rep. Luis Moscoso

Rep. Luis Moscoso on Comcast Newsmakers

Rep. Luis Moscoso talks about Transportation in Snohomish County and the Washington Voting Rights Act, HB 1413, in this Comcast Newsmakers interview:  

Rep. Brian Blake’s Legislative Update – March 11, 2013

March 11, 2013 - Rep. Brian Blake

Rep. Brian Blake’s Legislative Update – March 11, 2013

Dear neighbors, These last few days have been long with late evenings and even Saturday working to pass bills on the Floor. But we have to do it this way. If we stuck to a 9-5 schedule, chances are we’d run out of time and many bills would die.  While it may seem like many of the bills we pass are unimportant to some people, they are vital to the folks who are affected by those legislations.  Passage of some … Continue reading

Reykdal measures heading to the Senate

March 11, 2013 - Rep. Chris Reykdal

Reykdal measures heading to the Senate

The House of Representatives has approved a batch of bills introduced by Rep. Chris Reykdal (D-Tumwater) ahead of Wednesday’s critical House of Origin cut-off. Covering a range of issues with statewide significance, the measures will now head to the Senate. On Friday, the House approved Rep. Reykdal’s innovative approach to drop-out prevention. The bill creates a pilot program partnering community based organizations, like food banks and small farms, with school districts to target at-risk youth. Under the direction of the … Continue reading

Rep. Luis Moscoso’s Legislative Update – March 8, 2013

March 8, 2013 - Rep. Luis Moscoso

Dear Neighbors, Since my last update the legislative process has progressed past two sets of deadlines that bills must survive to continue being considered. Now, my colleagues and I are spending our days (and many nights) on the floor of the House debating and voting on amendments and bills. I’d like to take this opportunity to go over some of the more noteworthy legislation we’re discussing during these long days. Education My House colleagues and I are focused on improving schools to build a better … Continue reading

House approves package of Haigh bills

March 8, 2013 - Rep Kathy Haigh

House approves package of Haigh bills

As a critical deadline approaches, the House of Representatives has approved a number of measures introduced by Rep. Kathy Haigh (D-Shelton). Covering issues ranging from high school dropouts to local cemeteries – the bills target growing problems not only in the 35th Legislative District, but across the state. On Friday, the House took action on Rep. Haigh’s landmark dropout prevention bill. The legislation would provide families, schools and communities with the tools they need to increase the number of on-time … Continue reading

House OKs bills to increase voters’ access to their democracy

March 7, 2013 - Rep. Luis Moscoso

House OKs bills to increase voters’ access to their democracy

Legislation seeks stronger participation and diversity in the political process. A slate of voting and elections-bills designed to improve voter participation and boost diversity among the men and women who hold elected office was approved by the state House of Representatives today.  “We are a government by the people and for the people, and it is vital that we remove any barriers to participation in order to ensure citizens have a voice in our democracy,” said state Rep. Sam Hunt, … Continue reading

Bill to Aid Local Governments in Buying Local Passes House

February 27, 2013 - Rep. Larry Springer

Legislation sponsored by Representative Larry Springer (D-Kirkland) that would ease restrictions on local government purchasing practices passed out of the House of Representatives on Wednesday afternoon. “This legislation helps cities and counties better serve their citizens while promoting local and small businesses,” said Springer. “I was glad to see it pass the house with bipartisan support.” HB 1268 would help local governments purchase local products by loosening restrictions on contract bidding. As the law is currently written, city and county … Continue reading

Rep. Luis Moscoso’s Legislative Update – Feb 22, 2013

February 22, 2013 - Rep. Luis Moscoso

Rep. Luis Moscoso’s Legislative Update – Feb 22, 2013

Dear Neighbors, The last two weeks have been busy here in the legislature, but these weeks were not without moments of reflection and remembrance.  On February 13, members of the House and Senate held a Joint Session to honor former legislators who have passed away in the last two years. I took the opportunity to remember former Representative Jeanne Edwards, who I knew and worked with when she was in the House. You can read about her in this June … Continue reading

Elections-measures advancing in state House

February 22, 2013 - robbinsc

OLYMPIA – Rep. Gerry Pollet is no stranger to elections issues. As a case in point, one needn’t look any further than his work “to get more citizens hooked on voting.”   His advocacy for elections-measures is exemplified by Pollet’s continuing a mission he took on last year, namely supporting the placement of ballot-dropboxes on college and university campuses.  But that measure is just a third of the elections-bill threesome the Seattle representativeis backing this legislative session. He’s co-sponsoring House Bill … Continue reading

Rep. Orwall’s E-Newsletter for February 22, 2013

February 22, 2013 - Rep. Tina Orwall

Rep. Orwall’s E-Newsletter for February 22, 2013

Dear Neighbors, It has been another busy week in the legislature, but also a week with moments of reflection and remembrance.  On February 13, members of the House and Senate joined together for a Joint Legislative Session in the Senate chambers to honor former legislators who have passed away in the last two years. A poignant moment for me was memorializing my friend and former colleague, Sen. Scott White, who passed away in 2011.  It was a time to contemplate … Continue reading

House advances package of bills aimed at increasing voter access

February 12, 2013 - Rep. Luis Moscoso

House advances package of bills aimed at increasing voter access

Legislation seeks to increase diversity in representation, change registration deadlines, increase accessibility and youth participation While many state legislatures around the country have aimed to disqualify voters and construct barriers to participation, the Washington State House aimed to reverse this trend by passing a package of bills aimed at increasing voter access and turnout.  Members of the House Government Operations & Elections Committee approved five pieces of legislation today highlighted by the “Washington Voting Rights Act” a bill aimed at … Continue reading

Rep. Springer Introduces Local Government Efficiency Legislation

February 6, 2013 - Rep. Larry Springer

With local governments across the state struggling with budget woes, Rep. Larry Springer, D-Kirkland, is pushing a new set of bipartisan bills designed to streamline local government operations. “These efficiencies will not solve every local budget concern, but we owe it to our citizens to make sure our government is as organized and responsive to its citizens as possible,” said Springer. HB 1575 ends a requirement among county assessors to appraise public property that is tax-exempt. The primary concern in … Continue reading

Cemetery bill stays alive in Legislature

February 6, 2013 - toyrab

Cemetery bill stays alive in Legislature

State Representative Kathy Haigh’s (D-Shelton) legislation to streamline the formation of cemetery districts cleared a key committee hurdle when it was voted out of the House Local Government Committee last week. Rep. Haigh introduced the bill to combat a growing problem at Shelton Memorial Park. The cemetery has historically been financially supported by folks buying up space, but in recent decades more and more people are choosing to be cremated. While countless volunteers are working to maintain the cemetery, the … Continue reading

Sporting magazine looks at Sawyer bills reaffirming tribal hunting rights

February 5, 2013 - robertsg

Rep. David Sawyer has introduced two measures – House bills 1495 and 1496 – making it clear that state wildlife officials must respect the treaty rights of tribal hunters. In an interview with Northwest Sportsman magazine, Sawyer said: These are rights that already exist, and we need to recognize that as people of our word. Click here to read the full article on the bills.

Rep. Sam Hunt’s Electronic Newsletter – January 30, 2013

January 30, 2013 - robbinsc

The second week of the 2013 legislative session began on Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, and legislators honored the slain civil rights leader with a resolution on the House floor.  While his birthday is celebrated each year as a federal holiday, Dr. King’s message of equality for all is relevant every day of the year.  As he once famously said, “No one is free, until everyone is free.”  Representative Roger Freeman gave a moving speech, which I encourage you to … Continue reading

Moscoso introduces Washington Voting Rights Act

January 25, 2013 - nietol

The newly introduced Washington Voting Rights Act (WVRA), a measure to ensure all communities in Washington have a fair chance to elect candidates of their choice in local elections, will get a public hearing next Wednesday. “A democracy is government by and for the people, and that means every citizen’s vote must count.  How else can you guarantee accountability in government? That’s why we need election systems that provide all communities a fair chance to be represented in local governments … Continue reading

Welcome to the 2013 Legislative Session

January 17, 2013 - mcvicara

Friends, I am excited to be back in Olympia for the 2013 Legislative Session. As our state continues to climb out of the recession, I look forward to advocating for the policies and funding necessary to realize our shared visions of Washington’s future. Education Funding One of the biggest challenges facing the Legislature this session will be figuring out how to fully fund basic education. From its earliest days as a state, Washington has emphasized the importance of basic education … Continue reading

Ryu elected vice chair of Business and Financial Services

December 14, 2012 - nietol

Ryu elected vice chair of Business and Financial Services

Rep. Cindy Ryu returns to the House of Representative to serve her second term, but this time with more responsibilities on her plate. Earlier this week, Ryu’s peers elected her as vice chair of the Business and Financial Services Committee, which considers licensing and regulation of businesses and professions, issues relating to insurance, banks and credit unions, as well as consumer protection issues relating to motor vehicles, financial services, and insurance. “I am excited to assist Chair Kirby in considering … Continue reading

Fitzgibbon reappointed to vice-chair role, elected to caucus leadership post

December 12, 2012 - mcvicara

Fitzgibbon reappointed to vice-chair role, elected to caucus leadership post

Earlier this week, the House Democratic Caucus announced its committee structure for the upcoming session. State Representative Joe Fitzgibbon (D-Burien) will continue to serve as vice-chair of the House Local Government Committee. The Local Government Committee considers issues relating to operations and financing of counties, cities, and certain special districts. The committee also considers matters relating to the State Environmental Policy Act, Growth Management Act, and land use issues. “Making sure we keep our strong environmental protections in place will … Continue reading

Rep. Appleton elected vice chair of House Community Development, Housing & Tribal Affairs Committee

December 11, 2012 - Rep. Sherry Appleton

Rep. Appleton elected vice chair of House Community Development, Housing & Tribal Affairs Committee

Rep. Sherry Appleton (D-Poulsbo), vice chair of the House State Government & Tribal Affairs Committee during the 2011-12 legislative session, has been tapped to retain that position in its successor committee, Community Development, Housing & Tribal Affairs. Democrats, who hold a sizeable majority in the state House, restructured several policy committees in preparation for the coming session, narrowing the focus of some and expanding the duties of others. In this case, the state-government portfolio of the former committee has been … Continue reading

New legislative position multiplies Takko’s workload

June 14, 2012 - robbinsc

State Rep. Dean Takko has been appointed to the Joint Select Committee on Junior Taxing Districts, Municipal Corporations & Local Government Finance. This pivotal, eight-member panel — equal part Democratic and Republican, and including a complementary number of representatives and senators — is charged with finding better ways to stretch dwindling public dollars, while ensuring a safe and healthy level of essential public services. “With the Great Recession continuing its near-death grip on our economy,” Takko said, “it’s more important … Continue reading