In the News: State has much to learn from Panama Canal

Published on May 09, 2016
BY SEN. PAM ROACH …After leading a recent two-day fact-finding mission to the Panama Canal, I returned with an urgent warning for my fellow lawmakers: We need to get serious about making our ports more competitive. Other West Coast ports are meeting, and in some cases exceeding, the advantages of our deepwater ports. If we... Read More

Rivers’ corrections-partnership bill a ‘game changer’ for law enforcement

Published on April 19, 2016
It was 2011, and Clark County detective Jason Granneman was fed up. As a law-enforcement officer he came into daily contact with individuals who were serving the remainder of their sentences in the community, instead of behind bars, sometimes for months or even years. Officially they are in “community corrections” status; however, because they are... Read More

Bailey water-storage and family-caregiver planning bills become law

Published on April 04, 2016
After the conclusion of a 20-day special session, two bills sponsored by Sen. Barbara Bailey, R- Oak Harbor, were signed in a formal ceremony Friday morning. Senate Bill 6589, which was approved near-unanimously, directs state agencies in charge of water management to study the feasibility of water storage to recharge the Skagit River basin so that users... Read More

Senate approves ‘true’ supplemental capital budget

Published on February 26, 2016
The Senate today gave a strong endorsement to its proposed supplemental capital budget, voting 39-10 for a collection of changes totaling $87 million. The budget would provide funding for new classrooms, mental-health support and environmental cleanup, without tapping the state’s rainy-day fund or relying on a new revenue source. “It was gratifying to see my colleagues... Read More

Senate’s sensible supplemental capital budget built on solid principles

Published on February 24, 2016
The Senate’s capital-budget chair said the $87 million supplemental capital-budget proposal released today focuses squarely on supporting new classrooms, providing temporary mental-health housing and addressing an environmental-cleanup emergency, all within available revenue. “This is a true supplemental budget, not a laundry list of new projects. The supplemental is meant to be a vehicle for minor... Read More

Senate budget update improves services, outcomes for taxpayers

Published on February 24, 2016
Chief Senate budget writer Sen. Andy Hill released the chamber’s 2016 supplemental budget update today, which addresses Washington residents’ priorities and fixes issues at executive-branch state agencies, through additional reforms and oversight from the Legislature. “Last year lawmakers worked hard to find agreement on historic investments in our education system without raising taxes, which received... Read More