Washington State House Democrats


Gov. Signs Mena Bill Strengthening International Partnerships

OLYMPIA – Governor Inslee signed House Bill 2000 into law yesterday, positioning Washington for a brighter future in a globalized world. Recognizing the growing importance of international relations, Representative Sharlett Mena (D-Tacoma) sponsored the legislation to strengthen Washington’s partnerships and collaboration with neighbors.

Prior to HB 2000, Washington’s thirty-two-year-old framework hindered its ability to address critical issues in a modern context. The lack of a strategic plan limited proactive collaboration on supply chain disruptions and border trade. Additionally, communication gaps impeded progress on shared challenges like protecting the Salish Sea.

HB 2000 addresses these concerns. Under the new law, the Office of International Relations and Protocol (OIRP) will develop a comprehensive plan for international engagement and economic development, including educational and cultural exchanges. An interparliamentary exchange program with British Columbia will foster collaboration, while an expanded Legislative Committee on Economic Development and International Relations (LCEDIR) ensures stronger representation.

“By signing HB 2000, Washington can unlock it’s full potential as a global leader,” said Rep. Mena. “This is about strengthening partnerships, unlocking economic opportunities, and equipping our state to tackle shared challenges on the international stage.”

House Bill 2000 goes into effect 90 days after adjournment of the 2024 legislative session.