Spin Control

WA Lege Day 102: Medical marijuana, workers comp

OLYMPIA -- The Legislature is moving toward its temporary adjournment today, trying to pass as many bills as possible on which both chambers agree.

And the House may have a bit of fireworks over a bill on which there isn't universal agreement, SB 5566, which would allow for voluntary settlements on workers compensation claims, a process known as compromise and release. The bill has passed the Senate and has Gov. Chris Gregoire's support, but House Democratic leadership does not support the system and has not allowed a vote on it. House Republicans and some moderate Democrats may try to push it to the floor this afternoon.

Among bills on the Senate's plate is the latest version of the medical marijuana bill which passed the House in an amended version earlier this month.

In other back-and-forth action, the House refused to agree to Senate amendments to HB 1267, a bill on domestic partner parent laws and surrogacy, and asked for a conference committee. The Senate voted this morning to strip out the provisions on surrogacy, and send it back to the House on a 27-21 vote.

"I have a problem with the Legislature changing the meaning of mother and father," said Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, who voted no.

That wasn't what the bill did, replied Sen. Cheryl Pflug, R-Maple Valley. "The law needs to recognize we have non-traditional families."




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