Northwest

State House speaker talks taxes, death penalty, and harassment

Democrat Frank Chopp has had the speaker title since 1999, and he says he’s not retiring this year.

Puget Sound orcas surface near Tacoma. Photo by Mike Charest/Flickr

Orca Protection Act aims to protect Pacific Northwest’s iconic whales

Senator Kevin Ranker says the orca population in Puget Sound is down to 83, the lowest it had ever been.

Puget Sound orcas surface near Tacoma. Photo by Mike Charest/Flickr

Senate votes to extend college financial aid to state Dreamers

The bipartisan effort is intended to send a message to the other Washington while creating opportunities for young immigrants.

Senator Manka Dhingra, D-Redmond, speaks for her proposal to add domestic harassment to the crimes that could cost a person their gun rights. Photo by Taylor McAvoy

Senator proposes revoking firearm rights in cases of harassment

The bill would expand an existing law that takes guns from perpetrators of domestic violence.

Senator Manka Dhingra, D-Redmond, speaks for her proposal to add domestic harassment to the crimes that could cost a person their gun rights. Photo by Taylor McAvoy
Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia

Lawmakers want to rein in Washington’s many tax breaks

The vast majority of the state’s tax exemptions benefit businesses.

Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia

American Indian activists rally in Olympia

More than 100 were on hand to lobby state government on issues including the welfare of indigenous women and children, and a planned liquified natural gas facility in Tacoma.

Senate Health and Long Term Care Committee members, from left: Senators Karen Keiser, Patty Kuderer, Annette Cleveland, and Ann Rivers. Photo by Taylor McAvoy

Lawmakers consider a bill to raise the legal tobacco age

The bill has support from Attorney General Bob Ferguson.

Senate Health and Long Term Care Committee members, from left: Senators Karen Keiser, Patty Kuderer, Annette Cleveland, and Ann Rivers. Photo by Taylor McAvoy

Hundreds gather in Olympia for 40th annual March For Life

The march, which is timed to the anniversary of Roe v Wade, took place as legislators considered bills that would broaden access to abortion services.

Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia

Bill to ban the death penalty heard in committee

The hearing attracted passionate testimony from both sides of the issue.

Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia
Photo by Nicole Jennings

State legislators combat federal ruling on net neutrality

One Senate bill would prohibit internet service providers from exercising “deceptive” tactics and impairing or blocking legal web content.

Photo by Nicole Jennings
Nearly 100 people gathered in the Capitol Legislative Building in Olympia on Thursday, Jan. 18, to rally in support of the Reproductive Parity Act and other women’s health bills. Photo by Taylor McAvoy

Lawmakers again consider requiring health plans to cover abortions

Democratic lawmakers are hopeful that this is the year for the Reproductive Parity Act.

Nearly 100 people gathered in the Capitol Legislative Building in Olympia on Thursday, Jan. 18, to rally in support of the Reproductive Parity Act and other women’s health bills. Photo by Taylor McAvoy
Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia

State lawmakers re-consider eliminating statute of limitations on sex crimes

Having passed the House last year, the bill now appears to be stuck in a Senate committee.

Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia
Photo by Nicole Jennings

Senate Democrats push safety for sanitation workers

The bill would address concerns over training and access to safety information.

Photo by Nicole Jennings
Photo by Joe Hall/Flickr

Bills intended to expand and empower voters move ahead in Olympia

They will allow same-day voter registration and local redistricting to empower minorities.

Photo by Joe Hall/Flickr
A worker uses a large wrench to screw on a drill casing during the operation of a water well drill rig. Photo by Erika Mitchell

Governor signs bill to settle water-use dispute

The bill allows for limited drilling of new wells and also limits water withdrawals in new wells.

A worker uses a large wrench to screw on a drill casing during the operation of a water well drill rig. Photo by Erika Mitchell

State takes aim at opioid crisis

Bills would limit opioid prescriptions, invest in treatment options.

Ballot initiative threat has energy industry warming to carbon tax

Support for the governor’s proposed tax is tepid, but it’s there.

Photo by Nicole Jennings

Lawmakers advance a voluntary waiver of gun rights for those at risk of suicide

Under the proposed law, it would take those who volunteer 14 days to retain their right to a firearm.

Photo by Nicole Jennings

Capital budget passed, but affordable housing across the state still threatened

Some projects aimed at homeless families and disabled veterans won’t happen.

Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia

Legislature takes important step toward resolving capital budget issue

A lack of state funding has put the squeeze on a number of organizations throughout the state.

Photo by Visitor7/Wikimedia