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  • Landers: Outdoors issues hot topic in Olympia

    Issues from the great outdoors are trying to see the light of day in the 2013 Washington Legislature. Wolf reintroduction and the cash-poor state parks are issues likely to generate …


  • Balloting process changes proposed

    OLYMPIA – Legislators have a wide array of changes they think would make the state’s elections run smoother. At hearings Tuesday, they suggested paying the postage for voters to return …


  • Shea bill targets electoral voting

    OLYMPIA – Changing the way the state casts its Electoral College votes for president would be fairer to Eastern Washington voters, a Spokane Valley legislator said Tuesday. A Democratic leader, …


  • Wolf debate reaches Senate panel

    OLYMPIA – Farmers, ranchers and county officials from Eastern Washington said a plan to manage wolves as they are re-established in the state has good ideas but doesn’t go far …


  • Fast track legislation may get brakes

    OLYMPIA – For most people, an emergency is something that usually requires flashing lights and sirens. For legislators, an emergency is something that requires a law take effect right away, …


  • Capital gains tax would fund school reform

    OLYMPIA – The Senate’s top Democrat will propose asking Washington voters to approve a capital gains tax on the wealthy to help pay for better schools and more affordable college …


  • Pot leaving Washington is federal concern

    OLYMPIA – State officials are trying to convince the federal government they can keep legally grown pot from making its way over the border to Oregon, Idaho or other states …


  • Firearms Freedom Act bill unlikely to pass

    OLYMPIA – A bill to exempt firearms made and sold in Washington state from current or future federal gun laws was introduced by 10 House Republicans Thursday, but the GOP …


  • Washington’s paid family leave law at crossroads

    Six years ago, Washington state lawmakers approved a program giving parents five weeks paid time off to be with a new child. But the question of how to pay for …


  • Doug Clark: This highway sponsored by nutty lawmakers

    File under hogs soar, Bigfoot lassoed and hell ices over: A great notion is up for rumination in the Washington Legislature.


  • Abortion notification bill will get hearing in Senate

    OLYMPIA – A proposed law requiring parents to be notified of an abortion for any girl under 18 will get a hearing in a Senate committee this year, and possibly …


  • Lawmakers get responses to questions on marijuana

    OLYMPIA – In legalizing marijuana last fall, voters created more questions for the Legislature, not fewer. Some, including how the federal government is going to react, can’t be answered yet, …


  • Tiered tuition backed in Washington; GET would go

    College students in Washington could be charged higher tuition for degrees that typically result in higher-paying jobs, starting next fall. That’s the recommendation of two legislative committees that analyzed the …


  • Spin Control: Inslee, GOP hardly exchanging bouquets in early jousting

    OLYMPIA – The start of a new Legislature with a new administration is much given over to pomp and ceremony, so it wasn’t too surprising that most of the players …


  • Bill curbing self-defense pulled back

    OLYMPIA – A Washington state lawmaker withdrew a bill to limit self-defense rights after saying she received threats by telephone and email that have made her fear for her life. …


  • Bill would send wolves to inhabit West Side, too

    OLYMPIA – State Rep. Joel Kretz wants Western Washington to enjoy one of the “advantages” Eastern Washington has: wolves. Kretz, R-Wauconda, has introduced a bill that would allow the Department …


  • Lawmakers considering DUI courts for college campuses

    OLYMPIA – Washington State University uses many tools to combat binge drinking by students, from mandatory information programs to counseling to notifying parents, a school official told a legislative panel …


  • Inslee wants coal ports, trains studied

    OLYMPIA – State and federal agencies studying potential impacts of a new coal terminal near Bellingham must consider the increased train traffic in Spokane and other cities around the state, …


  • New Washington state governor is sworn in

    OLYMPIA – The first day of Jay Inslee’s governorship was marked by agreement that Washington needs more jobs but not more taxes, and some disagreements over environmental and social issues.


  • Gregoire offers parting words

    OLYMPIA – In her last speech to a Legislature with which she sometimes fought, Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire said they accomplished much over the last eight years, but still have …


  • Spin Control: Area’s delegation sees dropoff in experience

    OLYMPIA – When the Legislature opens Monday, Spokane will be in a demonstrably different position than in recent years. The years of experience among the area’s delegation will be almost …


  • Budget remains pressing issue in new legislative session

    OLYMPIA – A new year, a new Legislature, a new administration – and maybe some new ideas to solve some old, familiar problems. That may be the best way to …


  • Reaction lukewarm to Gregoire’s budget ideas

    OLYMPIA – Gov. Chris Gregoire proposed two lame-duck budgets Tuesday for her successor and the next Legislature to consider. One cuts programs to stay within the revenue the state expects …


  • Senate opening spurs 5 to apply

    A county commissioner, a former legislator and a former legislative aide are among five applicants so far for an open state Senate seat in Northeast Washington’s 7th District. The seat …


  • Senior legislator Morton to retire at end of year

    OLYMPIA – Eastern Washington lost its most senior legislator Wednesday but held onto a leadership position as members of the Senate began preparing for the 2013 session. State Sen. Bob …


  • Inslee stands by tax pledge

    OLYMPIA – Washington faces a $900 million budget hole through 2015, a slightly smaller one for the Legislature to fill than previously thought, thanks to a slowly recovering economy. Gov.-elect …


  • Field reports: Kokanee fishing to reopen at Lake PO

    FISHING – For the first time since 1999, anglers will be allowed to harvest kokanee in Lake Pend Oreille starting in 2013 under fishing regulations adopted Thursday by the Idaho …


  • State Parks plead for funds; Discover Pass sales leave shortfall

    As revenues continue short of projections, state parks leaders are telling Washington lawmakers they can’t do it alone. The Washington State Parks department plans to seek $27 million from the …


  • Vestal: Victim seeks to extend abuse statute

    It happens every time a victim of child sexual abuse wins a lawsuit: the cries that these people are only in it for the money. Only in it for the …

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