Eye On Olympia archive for Jan. 2009

SATURDAY, JAN. 31, 2009


A new term...

House Bill 1835 would replace old references to mental retardation in state law with the gentler phrase "intellectual disabilities."

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Tax on plastic proposed...

A senator from a struggling timber district has come up with an interesting idea: a tax on plastic.The money would go into a special "climate protection forestry account," which would be used to pay for incentives to the forestry industry. The goal: to reduce carbon,...

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FRIDAY, JAN. 30, 2009




Another dispatch from the water wars...

There's another interesting farmers-versus-environmentalists water battle shaping up in the statehouse this year.Farm groups are backing a reform that sounds utterly common-sense: changing decades-old laws that require farmers to use every drop of their water allocation or, after a few years of failing to do...

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THURSDAY, JAN. 29, 2009

Governor seeks storm help for businesses...

Gov. Chris Gregoire is asking the federal government to declare a statewide "economic injury disaster" for Washington's businesses due to the heavy snow storms in December.The move by the federal Small Business Administration would free up low-interest loans for businesses at a time when credit's...

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TUESDAY, JAN. 27, 2009

John Custer, an insulation contractor with SNAP, helps weatherize a house in Hillyard on Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2009. Washington Senate Democrats are proposing a wide array of "green energy" changes. The plans call for projects such as weatherizing old homes and creating a electric-vehicle corridor on Interstate 5 from Vancouver to Tijuana.  (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Charging stations on the freeway, car insurance by-the-mile, and lots and lots of weatherstripping and insulation: Senate D's propose energy/jobs plan... 

Echoing similar plans in the other Washington, Senate Democrats in Olympia Tuesday detailed their plans to combine “green jobs” with a renewed push for conservation and alternative sources of power.“We now have a partner in the federal government in a way that we haven't had...

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Lunchtime reading for you...

What we're reading:-This analysis, by a private think tank called the Washington State Budget and Policy Center, of the differences between House Democrats' recent cost-cutting plan and a similar proposal from Gov. Chris Gregoire. Researcher Jeff Chapman concludes that the House would reduce the budget...

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House passes first bills...

Local Reps. Matt Shea and John Driscoll made their opening floor speeches Monday, making the case -- although it didn't have to be made, judging by the unanimous voice vote -- for passage of a resolution honoring the state's National Guard troops.Shea, a former company...

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MONDAY, JAN. 26, 2009



How the neighbors are doing...

CNN has an interesting map up this morning, showing unemployment rates by state.The upshot: We're no Wyoming or North Dakota (when did you last hear that?), but Washington's still doing the best on the West Coast.

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SUNDAY, JAN. 25, 2009

Of bacon, longhorns and seaweed-eating sheep...

Here's the quiz:a) Where does the cattle-calling nickname "Bossy" come from?b) Why is bacon not so tasty anymore?c) And what is the world's only seaweed-eating sheep?Find out all this -- and much, much more -- in three minutes of testimony by Sen. Ken Jacobsen, D-Seattle....

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From the notebook...

"At this very moment, we're not losing anybody, because where would you go?" -Attorney General Rob McKenna, telling a state salary commission that he'd like to pay his lawyers more, but that the recession has curtailed turnover for now."I've never been flipped off more times...

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From the bill pile...

...comes this one, one of several dozen from Sen. Ken Jacobsen, D-Seattle:Senate Bill 5520: "An act relating to requiring agencies to provide truthful information to legislators."

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Short takes and breaking news from the Washington Legislature and the state capital.


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