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House passes Bill committing Washington to 100-percent clean energy

House passes Bill committing Washington to 100-percent clean energy

OLYMPIA – A historic bill to commit Washington to 100-percent clean energy from renewable and zero-emission sources took another step forward today following passage by the Washington House of Representatives.

Representatives voted 56-42 in favor of Senate Bill 5116, a centerpiece of Gov. Jay Inslee's 2019 agenda to take meaningful action on climate change and reduce Washington's carbon footprint.

Sponsored by Sen. Reuven Carlyle (D-Seattle) and in House companion legislation by Rep. Gael Tarleton (D-Ballard), the bill requires all electric utilities in Washington to transition to a 100-percent, carbon-neutral electricity supply by 2030 and to 100-percent carbon-free electricity ...

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Two-year operating budget approved by Senate

Two-year operating budget approved by Senate

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Senate today approved a $52.2 billion state operating budget to fund vital state services, including targeted support for the state’s behavioral health system, K-12 special education, higher education, and the environment.

Because the Senate amended ESHB 1109 before passing it, budget writers from the Senate and House must now begin a conference process to negotiate the differences in the versions that passed each chamber and pass a final operating budget before the end of the legislative session on April 28.

More than half of the state budget pays for K-12 education, honoring ...

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Senate passes bill to provide assistance to homeless college students

Senate passes bill to provide assistance to homeless college students

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Senate voted today to pass a bill to provide assistance to homeless college students. The bill passed on a vote of 30-18.

Senate Bill 5800, sponsored by Sen. Emily Randall (D-Bremerton), creates pilot programs at four colleges across the state, two on each side of the Cascades, to provide assistance to homeless students and students who were in foster care.

“As a state, we’ve taken important steps to support young students experiencing homelessness while in our K-12 system, but once they get to college, they lose that network,” Randall said. “College students experiencing ...

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Senate passes legislation to create LGBTQ Commission

Senate passes legislation to create LGBTQ Commission

Legislation to create a state commission to work with state agencies to develop and implement policies to address the unique needs of the LGBTQ community passed off the Senate floor today on a 34-14 vote.

Sponsored by Sen. Claire Wilson, Senate Bill 5356 would direct the governor to appoint commissioners who present a balanced and diverse representation of race and ethnicity, geography, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, socioeconomic status, and occupation.

"This will help members of our community whose identify puts them at extreme and ...

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Senate unanimously passes Randall bill to help relocating military families

Senate unanimously passes Randall bill to help relocating military families

OLYMPIA – Legislation to ease the transition of children in military families to new schools passed unanimously today off the floor of the Senate.

“This is all about ensuring that the families that are serving us are served by the work we're doing for them,” said Sen. Emily Randall (D-Bremerton), the bill’s sponsor. “It will be good for kids, for their families, and for their school districts.”

Senate Bill 5603 will allow the children of service members who receive transfer orders to any base in Washington to enroll in school before they have an address ...

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The Everblue State podcast: Sen. Emily Randall on being a new senator

The Everblue State podcast: Sen. Emily Randall on being a new senator

In this week’s episode of the Everblue State podcast, Sen. Randall spoke about what it’s like to be one of the Senate’s newest members. Her seat was previously held by a Republican, and she is working to make sure her constituents are fairly represented. She’s also one of the Legislature’s several new women of color, and is an LGBTQ leader. She told the hosts what it’s like to serve in a Legislature that is slowly becoming more diverse. you can find the podcast here or below:

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State Legislature welcomes one of the most diverse cohorts on record, including women of color

State Legislature welcomes one of the most diverse cohorts on record, including women of color

The Washington State Legislature welcomed one of its most diverse cohorts of elected officials in state history on January 14. The most recent class includes a female majority in the House Democratic Caucus with women of color serving in both the House and Senate leadership ranks. Washington currently ranks fourth in the nation in terms of gender parity in the state legislature.

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Billig elected Senate Majority Leader

Billig elected Senate Majority Leader

TUKWILA – Sen. Andy Billig, D-Spokane, will be the new Senate Majority Leader in the Washington State Senate, following a vote among Senate Democrats on Monday. Billig will take over immediately as Sen. Sharon Nelson, D-Maury Island, prepares to retire after more than a decade of service in the Legislature, including five years (2013-18) as leader of the Senate Democrats. Billig has served in the Senate since 2013 and was first elected to the state House of Representatives in 2011. Billig is the only Democrat in the Senate representing eastern Washington, but he’s not the first Spokane Democrat to ...

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Washington makes history, becoming the 10th state to protect LGBTQ youth from conversion therapy

Washington makes history, becoming the 10th state to protect LGBTQ youth from conversion therapy

From The Trevor Project: This week the state of Washington made history, becoming the first state in 2018, and the 10th state in total, to pass protections for LGBTQ youth from the barbaric practice of conversion therapy. Conversion therapists falsely claim be able to change LGBTQ youth into straight and cisgender youth. Prominent professional health associations—including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics, among numerous others—oppose the use of conversion therapy on youth, calling the practice harmful and ineffective. As the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services ...

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With Dems in control, voting rights, health care access, gun safety, education, jobs take center stage

With Dems in control, voting rights, health care access, gun safety, education, jobs take center stage

OLYMPIA — With Democrats back in control, Washingtonians saw a Legislature that fought for their values, putting the focus on issues that will leave a lasting, positive impact on people in communities throughout the state. “I am so proud of what we have accomplished on behalf of the people of this state,” said Senate Majority Leader Sharon Nelson. “We put people first and followed through on an agenda that every Washingtonian can be proud of.” The Legislature adjourned today on time for the first time in four years, passing a balanced budget plan that will make substantial investments in ...

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